Another major crisis is brewing in the National leadership of the All Progressives Congress (APC) as the Deputy National Chairman (North), Senator Lawal Shuaibu, is demanding the resignation of National Chairman Adams Oshiomhole.
He accused him of lacking the capacity to lead a national party.
Shuaibu is holding Oshiomhole responsible for the crisis in the party leading to the recent Supreme Court judgement sacking all its candidates in the last election in Zamfara state.
In a letter dated May 27, and addressed to Oshiomhole, Shuaibu alleged that some of the decisions taken by the National Chairman were done without consultations with the leadership of the party while unilaterally upturning some major decisions taken by the NWC.
He said majority of those who contested the 2019 election on the platform of the party were not happy, while the party came out of the 2015 elections worse than it went into it.
He alleged that minutes of meetings held at the national secretariat would clearly revealed that decisions of meetings were altered, adding that the disqualification of the former Minister of Women Affairs, Hajia Jummai Alhassan was clearly a decision taken by the chairman as against the decision to allow her contest the election.
The six-page letter was delivered to the office of the Chairman yesterday
Blaming the party’s crisis at the door steps of Oshiomhole, Shuaibu said: “The last congresses in states, unfortunately, represented a complete lack of knowledge, not to talk of experience on how due process in political electoral process is adhered to.
“The National Working Committee is saddled with the responsibility of recommending guidelines for every electoral process and appointing committees that will embark on conducting primary elections for every constituency and submit report and thereafter an appeal committee will attend to complaints and petitions and also submit its report to the NWC.
“The National Working Committee is then expected to perform the duty of the final adjudicatory body on each electoral matter and from there you have the final list of candidates. National Chairman cannot, in any circumstances be Chairman of any committee be it screening committee of any other committee contrary to what you did.
“Chairman presides over the meetings of National Working Committee in which each matter disposed of by any appeals committee is examined and final decision reached.
“If the National Chairman should chair any of these committees what if there is a complaint about his own conduct, who do you send your petition to? He cannot be a judge in his own matter.”
The APC deputy national Chairman alleged that most of the meetings where major decisions affecting the party were taken were not held at the secretariat and not backed by minutes.
He said: “National Working Committee meetings, in my own experience, shall not be held in private residences especially where it involves thousands of party men and women with grudges over injustice meted out on them by officials of the Party. The party secretariat is the officially recognised venue of such meetings, unless if there are other motives for keeping away from there.
“For every meeting of any organ of the party, there shall be minutes of the meeting reflecting every decision taken at such meeting. Most of the meetings held and fundamental decisions purported to have been taken were not backed by minutes.
“The few meetings that were covered by the secretariat and minutes taken could clearly show that final decisions of the NWC were altered! Example was the unanimous decision by NWC to allow Mrs Aisha Alhassan, former Minister of Women Affairs to go and contest with her co-aspirants at the primaries in Taraba State which decision was overruled by you.
“You singIe-handedly disqualified her and members in the party got depleted and thereby weakened. So also, several other aspirants that you personally disqualified without just cause.
“Arising from such conduct, the APC ended up with severe injuries and is today badly fractured in virtually every constituency in this country, resulting in the erosion of the massive goodwill that you met the party with. “
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“Apart from the President, more than 60% of members, including those that contested elections under the APC in 2019 are not happy with the process as it left a lot to be desired. We have court cases in every state, by far much more than it was in 2015 and I wonder how much money the party is likely to spend on litigations arising from mistakes of the National Chairman in not adhering to due process and sidelining transparency.
“Committees for primaries became secret affair to the extent that not even members of the NWC were aware of how certain committees were constituted with members mostly from Edo State outnumbering every other state and in some instance, the same Edo members serving in more than one state in conducting primaries.
“The records are there to be seen. What is wrong with being just in what you find yourself doing for the people? Personal interest should not be allowed to overshadow the interests of our teeming loyal members across the country.”
He went on: “We had 23 states in 2015, but after the 2019 elections we lost 7 states. We also had 60 Senators in 2015 at the end of the election count, we now end up with 57 Senators in 2019. You were not brought in to lose election. It is absolutely unacceptable.
“What this entails is that for any Senator to become a presiding officer, he needs to go and kneel down before the PDP Senators and beg for support! And to make things worse, you announced that APC will not allow any PDP Senator to be appointed as Committee Chairman except the committees statutorily meant for the opposition members of the Senate.
“That is never the tradition of the legislature anywhere. The legislature is the house of collaboration and lobby and you can never succeed with hostile approach, you must lobby seek for cooperation of members across party divides.
“If you don’t know, you have made the situation worse than it seems. Try and use your calculator and you will find that as at now, if anybody, backed by the PDP members, wants to become Senate President, all he needs is the support of only 6 APC Senators to win the election on the floor of the Senate. Chairman, strategies are not announced on television, they are discussed at caucuses.
“In advanced democracies, people who fail to add value or build over and above what they met on assumption of duty show some civilised examples, they honourably bow out.