The splinter group of the All Progressives Congress (APC) led by Buba Galadima, has petitioned the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) requesting the nullification of the June 23, national convention.
The group has also in the petition prayed that the electoral body seizes to recognise the Oshiomhole’s led National Working Committee, citing irregularities in the elections and congresses conducted by party officials at states level in the build up to the national convention.
In a statement titled: Request To Invalidate The Purported Election Of National Officers Of The All Progressives Congress (APC) And Not To Recognise Them”, signed by the group’s chairman, Buba Galadima, the group claimed that there could not have been a valid convention to elect the national officers of the party when there were parallel congresses held in 22 states with different set of officials emerging from the congresses. It argued that the election of the national officers is in contravention of Article 20(1) of the APC Constitution.
The statement reads in part: ‘’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 assess the Report of your offices in these States for confirmation.
‘’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”.
‘’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.
‘’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.
‘’I have attached the video recording of the relevant aspects of the proceedings of the convention for your perusal.
‘’Furthermore, a transcript of the proceedings concerning the 18 officers are also attached for your records. See Annexure 1.
‘’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;”.
‘’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.
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