The leader of the faction of the All Progressives Congress, Reformed-APC, Buba Galadima, has called on the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, to declare as null and void the election of the National Chairman of the party, Adams Oshiomhole, and other executives over ‘flawed and undemocratic Convention’.
In a letter made available to newsmen in Abuja on Wednesday, Mr Galadima, claimed that the Congresses leading up to the National Convention of the party were marred with serious irregularities and manipulations, saying that in at least 22 States, parallel Congresses were held and a different set of delegates and officers emerged.
According to him, some of the States include: Abia, Adamawa, Bauchi, Benue, Cross-River, Delta, Enugu, Imo, Jigawa, Kaduna, Kano, Katsina, Kebbi, Kogi, Kwara, Lagos, Niger, Ondo, Oyo, Rivers, Sokoto and Zamfara.
Mr Galadima, therefore, urged INEC to declare invalid and unlawful and not to accord any form of recognition to officers purportedly elected at the APC Convention of June 23, 2018.
“The officers include the aforesaid 18 officers and indeed all those who purportedly withdrew during the Convention as they were just declared elected by the Chairman of the Convention Committee without a “Yes” or “No” vote and indeed without any form of democratic foundation,” he said.
Read full statement below:
REQUEST TO INVALIDATE THE PURPORTED ELECTION OF NATIONAL OFFICERS OF THE ALL PROGRESSIVES CONGRESS (APC) AND NOT TO RECOGNISE THEM.
I write as a foundation member of the All Progressives Congress (APC), a member of its Board of Trustees, National Caucus and an automatic delegate at its National Convention, to bring to your notice that on 23rd June, 2018, the All Progressive Congress (APC) purportedly held a very flawed and undemocratic Convention for the purpose of electing its National Officers following the disputed Congresses held in various Wards (May 2, 2018), Local Governments (May 5, 2018), State Congress (May 8, 2018).
2. These Congresses leading up to the National Convention of the party were marred with serious irregularities and manipulations to the extent that in at least 22 States, parallel Congresses were held and different set of delegates and officers emerged. Some of the States includes: Abia, Adamawa, Bauchi, Benue, Cross-River, Delta, Enugu, Imo, Jigawa, Kaduna, Kano, Katsina, Kebbi, Kogi, Kwara, Lagos, Niger, Ondo, Oyo, Rivers, Sokoto and Zamfara.
You should please access the Report of your offices in these States for confirmation.
3. In particular the “election” of the following officers of the party was in direct contravention of Article 20(1) of the APC Constitution, which says:
“Unless otherwise provided for: All party posts prescribed or implied by this Constitution shall be filled by democratically conducted elections at the respective National Convention or Congress subject, where possible, to consensus, Provided that where a Candidate has emerged by consensus for an elective position, a vote of “Yes” or “No” by ballot or voice shall be called, to ensure that it was not an imposition which could breed discontent and crisis”.
4. The officers affected include:
1. National Chairman – Comrade Adams Oshiomhole.
2. National Welfare Secretary – Alhaji Ibrahim Masari.
3. National Financial Secretary – Alhaji Tunde Bello.
4. National Physically Challenged – by Misbahu L. Didi.
5. Zonal Secretary North-Central – Dr. Zakari Muhammed.
6. Zonal Organising Secretary North-Central – Ibrahim M. Abdul.
7. Zonal Women Leader North-Central – Hajia Hassana Abdullahi.
8. Ex-Officio North-Central – Nelson Abba.
9. Zonal Secretary North-East – Abubakar Sadiq Ajia
17. Zonal Women Leader South-West – Mrs. Kemi Nelson.
18. Ex-Officio South-West – Omoloye O. Akintola.
5. Furthermore, in the course of the Convention proceedings, many other persons purportedly withdrew from the contest for the various offices, and the Convention Chairman announced them as unopposed and “elected” without following any form of due process. This affected the position of the National Secretary and others.
6. What transpired was that the Chairman of the Convention, His Excellency, Alhaji Mohammed Badaru Abubakar flagrantly usurped the powers of the delegates and declared 18 officers elected without following the laid down criteria.
7. I have attached the video recording of the relevant aspects of the proceedings of the convention for your perusal.
8. Furthermore, a transcript of the proceedings concerning the 18 officers are also attached for your records. See Annexure 1.
9. The Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 provides in S.223 (1) and (2) that “(1) The constitution and rules of a political party shall-
(a) provide for the periodical election on a democratic basis of the principal officers and members of the executive committee or other governing body of the political party; and
(2) For the purposes of this section –
(a) the election of the officers or members of the executive committee of a political party shall be deemed to be periodical only if it is made at regular intervals not exceeding four years;”.
10. Furthermore, the Electoral Act, 2010 as amended gives INEC enormous powers to monitor political parties. Specifically, S.85(1), 85(2) and 85(3) provide:
85. (1) A registered political party shall give the Commission at least 21 days notice of any convention, congress, conference or meeting convened for the purpose of electing members of its executive committees, other governing bodies or nominating candidates for any of the elective offices specified under this Act.
85 (2) The Commission may, with or without prior notice to the political party monitor and attend any convention, congress, conference or meeting which is convened by a political party for the purpose of – (a) electing members of its executive committees or other governing bodies; (b) nominating candidates for an election at any level; and (c) approving a merger with any other registered political party.
85(3) The election of members of the executive committee or other governing body of a political party, including the election to fill a vacant position in any of these bodies, shall be conducted in a democratic manner and allowing for all members of the party or duly elected delegates to vote in support of a candidate of their choice.
11. The Convention held on 23rd June, 2018 which purportedly produced the National Officers of the APC was not conducted in a democratic manner as required by Article 20(1) of the APC Constitution, the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and the Electoral Act.
12. All attempts to activate the appeal processes and internal mechanisms of seeking redress as a senior member of the APC was frustrated by the party.
13. Our prayers:
We respectfully, therefore, request INEC to intervene, following precedents established over the years, to declare invalid and unlawful and not to accord any form of recognition to officers purportedly elected at the APC Convention of June 23, 2018. The officers include the aforesaid 18 officers and indeed all those who purportedly withdrew during the Convention as they were just declared elected by the Chairman of the Convention Committee without a “Yes” or “No” vote and indeed without any form of democratic foundation. It also includes the remaining officers as the Delegates election that produced them wase seriously flawed and not in compliance with relevant rules. Their emergence is a breach of the 1999 Constitution, the Electoral Act and the Constitution of the APC (Article 20(1)).