Crisis Brews in APC Over Leadership Ambition

APC 600By Chuks Ehirim

The yet to be registered All Peoples Congress, (APC) is facing very serious crisis which if not carefully managed may scuttle the ambition of its promoters, to float a new party that is made up of three main registered political party and faction of two other ones. APC is the product of the coming together of Action Congress of Nigeria, (ACN), All Nigeria
Peoples Party (ANPP), as well as Congress for Progressive Change, (CPC) and factions of the All Progressive Grand Alliance (APGA) and Democratic People Party (DPP).

The merging groups submitted its letters seeking for registration as a political party with the Independent National Electoral Commission, (INEC) just last week, immediately after that crisis of ambition by various individuals to be in the leadership of the new party is said to have engulfed the APC.

This crisis our investigations revealed has to do with the desire by some personalities in the three parties to impose themselves as leaders of the yet to be registered party against the wishes of the leadership of each of the merging parties.

In ACN for instance to which the chairmanship of the party has been zoned, Chief Tom Ikimi is said to be doing everything within his powers to occupy that position, in spite of stiff opposition from the leadership of the ACN. We gathered reliably that the ACN leadership prefers its chairman and former governor of Osun state, Chief Bisi Akande to be at the helm of affairs of the new party.

In the ANPP former Governor of Kano state and the party’s Presidential Candidate of the 2011 election, Mallam Ibrahim Shakarau is said to be fighting the battle of his life to clinch the position of National secretary of APC  which was zoned to the CPC. Shekarau also is said not to be having the backing of the Leadership of the ANPP for this ambition.

The infighting, is worse within the CPC where former Minister of Federal Capital Territory, Mallam Nasir, el-Rufai is slugging it out with the party’s National secretary, Engr. Buba Galadima, el-Rufai too is facing very stiff opposition from the core leaders and loyalists of the CPC who have  argued that he does not share the same philosophy or ideological standpoint which the party represents.

Trouble is said to have started within the APC, when  members of the merging committee finished the work assigned to them by their respective merging parties and decided to transmute themselves into the leadership of the new parties to be registered. This we gathered did not go down well with the respective leadership of each of the three parties.

It was as a result of this seeming disagreement that the APC application with INEC submitted last week did not include names of its national officers.

To this effect therefore, chairmen, secretaries and treasurers of the three parties held a crucial meeting at the Asokoro, Abuja residence of the national chairman of ANPP Dr. Ogbonnaya Onu, on Monday night. The meeting was said to have continued Tuesday.

An highly reliable source who was at the Monday meeting told our reporters that the party leaders decided to dissolve the merger committee whose members have been battling to transform themselves into the leadership of the yet to be registered APC.

The source added that after Monday’s meeting party leaders were to go to INEC to clear some legal issues that might have to do with the registration of the party.

The internal struggle is said o have set Ikimi at logger head with the leaders of ACN most especially former governor of Lagos state and national leader of the party, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu who is said to prefer Bisi Akande for the chairmanship of the party.

Sources within ACN disclosed that Ikimi’s greatest undoing seems to be the fact that his fellow party members are not very comfortable with his past political antecedents. They cite his close affinity to the former President Olusegun Obasanjo and the role he played in handing over the party’s presidential ticket to the Ota farmer in 2003.

It is the same crisis of confidence that el-Rufai  as well as Alhaji Hassan Lawal  who both  served in a past  PDP  government as  ministers are facing in their new party CPC,our sources say.

The core loyalists of the party (CPC) who are said to prefer their national secretary, Buba Galadima are arguing that it will be dangerous to give such sensitive position as the national secretary party of the emerging party to people “who hitherto, did not share in the philosophy or ideology of the CPC.”

They cited the issue of alleged corruption since they are still facing anticorruption charges from the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, (EFCC).

They are also complaining that it will be wrong to bring in those who do not know anything about the origin of the party before now and entrust them with the position that will determine the fate and future of the party when fully registered.


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