.Warns Govs against unguarded utterances
.Says, Buni must conduct March 26 Convention
By Zakaa Lazarus
Following the crisis and decision by the Independent National Electoral Commission INEC not to recognize the Niger state Governor, Abubakar Sani Bello as acting National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress APC Caretaker Extraordinary Convention Planning Committee CECPC, President Muhammadu Buhari on Wednesday make a U-turn on his earlier decision supporting the sack of the CECPC substantive National Chairman, Gov. Mai Mala Buni.
The president said his decision was necessitated by the need to save the party from INEC’s hammer.
Vanguard had last week reported how Gov. Buni had left Dubai for London to confer with the president and seek his intervention in the leadership crisis that has recently threatened the party to its foundation.
In a letter dated March 16 and addressed to the Chairman, Progressive Governors’ Forum PGF and Kebbi state Governor, Abubakar Atiku, the president said the status quo ante be maintained.
The letter was copied by the acting CECPC Chairman, Gov. Sani Bello, Secretary to the Government of the Federation SGF, Mr Boss Mustapha, Director General State Services, Yusuf Magaji Bichi and the Inspector General of Police, Usman Baba.
The letter reads; “As you are, no doubt aware, the All Progressives Congress, APC, is currently facing a litany of controversies and some level of uncertainties that may ultimately question its status and affect the status and feasibility of its proposed National Convention.
“In addition, it has come to my attention that, because of recent events, the APC is faced with a multiplicity of court cases pending against it in various courts across the country.
“As a result of this, the party faces the possibility and prospect of the invalidation of all its activities and actions by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).
“Furthermore, the party has demonstrated its inability to proceed with the issue of effecting change in the leadership of its Caretaker Extraordinary Convention Committee (CECC), in a way that is inclusive, legal and respectful of the time limit set and required for giving the INEC sufficient notice of the time and venue for holding its convention.
“No doubt, these controversies and uncertainties, as enumerated above, pose a real threat to the party; and may lead to a possible nonrecognition of its activities, elections and the probable invalidation of all its other actions by INEC. This may ultimately even lead to its implosion and non-existence.
“There is, therefore, an urgent need for the party too, as much as possible, avoid all controversies, litigations and all other necessary distractions and quickly get its acts together.
“In view of the foregoing, therefore, I would like now to direct as follows:
“First, the issue of the leadership of the Caretaker Extra Ordinary Convention Committee (CECPC), should immediately return to status quo ante;
“Second, all members of the Governor’s Forum and their followers should desist from any behaviour or utterance that will likely lead to disunity in the ranks of the party, and ultimately jeopardise the transition to the convention;
“Third, the Mai Mala Buni-led CECPC should, accordingly, be allowed to proceed with all necessary preparations to hold the convention as planned— unfailingly, on 26th March 2022”.