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Convention: Real reason APC chose consensus option ~ Prestige News
•Party ‘to abide by Electoral Act’
•President solicits unity among party stakeholders
Nasarawa State Governor Abdullahi Sule yesterday shed light on why the All Progressives Congress (APC) opted for consensus to pick party officials at tomorrow’s convention.
The convention is billed for Eagle Square in Abuja.
Sule, who is the Chairman of the Media/Publicity Committee of the convention, said President Muhammadu Buhari and APC governors agreed on a consensus to ensure a hitch-free convention and avert a crisis.
President Buhari also emphasised the need for unity at his meeting with the National Assembly caucus of the party yesterday.
The governor, who spoke with reporters in Abuja, said the party would abide by the Electoral Act during the convention.
The implication is that political appointees will not participate in the primaries.
Sule said APC governors were more united, adding that they would go into the convention as one united family.
He said: “We have been driven towards a consensus arrangement so that we can have a very peaceful convention after which most of the political activities will begin, which will lead to the success of the party at most of the elections that we are going to have next year by the grace of God.
“We also want to inform you that major caucuses of this party have been meeting to discuss most of the grey areas and resolve them and so far, so good, all the governors have been inspired.
“We had a meeting with Mr President where some grey areas were resolved and the governors are now united more than you can ever think. We are going as a united front into this convention.
“We also look forward actually to a convention that is going to signify our unity and our strength as we come together to face the election next year.”
On the position of the Electoral Act on consensus, Sule said the party will comply with all extant laws in its activities.
President Buhari had struck a deal with the governors over one of the seven chairmanship aspirants, Senator Abdullahi Adamu.
Sule said the ruling party will not violate the laws of the country.
On the number of delegates expected at the convention, Sule said the figures were yet to be ascertained, adding that the number would be determined after accreditation.
A pre-convention policy conference tagged: “Consolidating democracy: scorecard, impact and the road ahead” is slated for today.
Secretary of the Pre-Convention Conference Committee and the Director-General of the National Orientation Agency, Garba Abari, said the overall objective of the conference is to deliberate on the current and future policy direction of the party and provide a reform agenda.
He said the conference will seek to address many issues, including governance, economy and social environment with the aim to re-enkindle investors’ confidence in the Nigerian economy.
Participants include President Muhammadu Buhari, Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, President of the Senate, Speaker of the House of Representatives, Chairman and Members of the Caretaker Extraordinary Convention Planning Committee (CECPC), governors, among others.
During his meeting with the National Assembly Caucus, President Buhari charged party leaders to avoid squabbles that could create disharmony.
He reminded them about the challenges of future elections, saying that they are imminent.
He said: “We cannot afford to do anything that will jeopardise the chances of the party in the 2023 general elections. The limited time frame of the INEC timetable does not permit any room for delay or further squabbling. We must, therefore, in the light of this reality, consistently keep our eyes on the ball and refuse any distraction.”
President Buhari told the lawmakers that a zoning template was produced and adopted by the party after wide consultations to reflect diversity.
He said: “This will not only produce a smooth process and limit friction but will enhance the image of the party positively and strengthen our overall position of dominance in the political space.”
The President said he met with the governors and the party national chairmanship aspirants on Wednesday to reiterate the need for unity.
Senate President Ahmad Lawan, who led other members of the caucus to meet the President, said consensus will work.
He added: “We hope that we would have achieved so many consensuses in selecting and electing the officers for this party so that when we go into the convention, most of the offices should be for affirmation or confirmation.”