The All Progressives Congress, APC is reportedly on the verge of suspending its National Convention earlier scheduled for June 2021.
A report monitored by Naija News on The PUNCH revealed that the possible postponement of the convention was connected to the upcoming religious festivals.
A top-ranking member of the national caucus of the party who confirmed the possible postponement of the event to newsmen said it is impossible for the convention to hold on the earlier announced date, noting that the Christian believers would be observing lent and conventional wisdom dictates that will allow them to observe the religious period.
He further explained that after the Christians are done with their festive in April, the Muslim brothers will also commence the month of Ramadan and that if not for the COVID-19, many would travel for the lesser hajj for the duration of this period.
The source said after all of that, the ward, local government and state congresses will begin to elect delegates for the convention.
The source who allegedly spoke to PUNCH correspondent on condition of anonymity explained that party leaders at various levels were fully aware of the development, which would be formally communicated soon.
Naija News recall that the National Executive Committee meeting presided over by the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), had on December 8, 2020, granted a six-month tenure extension to Governor Mai Mala Buni-led Caretaker/Extra-Ordinary National Convention Planning Committee.
The committee was to within the period conduct a membership registration/revalidation, reconcile aggrieved members, conduct ward, local government and state congresses and a national convention to elect new national party leaders. However, the top-ranking caucus member of the party on Monday while interacting with newsmen, noted that the unprecedented interest shown by “enthusiastic Nigerians” in the ongoing membership registration prompted the party to extend the time for the exercise.
In his submission, the decision was also informed by the need to resolve the litigation in the Rivers State chapter and reconcile aggrieved party members.
His statement reads: “It’s not possible to hold the convention in June as was earlier envisaged. You see, the membership registration and revalidation will end on March 31st. Our Christian brothers are observing lent and conventional wisdom dictates that we allow them to observe the religious period.
“Now, as soon as they conclude, our Muslim brothers will commence the month Ramadan and you know, if not for the COVID-19, many would travel for the lesser hajj for the duration of this period. After all of that, you have ward, local government and state congresses to elect delegates for the convention.
“Let’s not deceive ourselves, congresses at the ward and state levels are not a joke. Appeal committees will be set up to review cases that definitely will come up. These will have to be thrashed out before the national convention. You will agree with me, the mismanagement of the process by the Adams Oshiomhole-led National Working Committee, in 2018, is responsible for the crisis the party has been trying to manage ever since.”
On his part, when contacted about the development, the National Secretary of the party, Senator John Akpanudoedehe, cautioned the opposition and those working for them to concentrate on their parties and leave the APC alone.
He said, “The opposition should mind their business and leave the APC alone. We in the Governor Mai Mala Buni-led CENCPC have a mandate given to us by the NEC to reorganise the party, reinvigorate the party and redirect the party, we are doing just that and we are doing very well.
“You can see from the membership registration we are doing, in over 99 per cent of the states, there are no complaints of any kind. It is not just rush; you cannot build something on nothing.”
Meanwhile, Former Vice President Atiku Abubakar may emerge as the candidate of the main opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) for the 2023 presidential election, Naija News reports.
It was gathered that the PDP is planning to repeat the 2019 formula, which is used to contest against President Muhammadu Buhari – an election they believe Buhari did not win but muscled Atiku out with the power of incumbency.