Aggrieved members of the newPeoples Democratic Party in the All Progressives Congress (APC) yesterday made good their threat to factionalise the party, with the emergence of the Reformed-All Progressives Congress (R-APC).
The group, at a press conference at the Sheraton Hotel and Towers, Abuja, announced Alhaji Buba Galadima as its National Chairman, Dr. Fatai Atanda (Oyo State) as National Secretary and Kazeem Afegbua (Edo State) as National Publicity Secretary.
Galadima told reporters that the decision to form the R-APC was a fallout of the APC congress, which he described as null and void due to the violations of the party’s constitution.
Describing the APC under the leadership of President Muhammadu Buhari as “rudderless” and “incompetent”, Galadima said the president’s highhandedness showed in his various attempts to shut out members of the nPDP even after they had table their grievances, giving him the latitude to discuss with them the best way forward.
He said the R-APC remained the authentic party and does not need to approach the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) for registration, adding that anyone who feels uncomfortable with the arrangement can go to court.
He also said Senate President Bukola Saraki and House Speaker Yakubu Dogara are key members of the R-APC.
Galadima described the change promised by the APC as a “fake change”, adding that the RAPC would bring real change in the 2019 elections under his authentic leadership.
“We are saying that we are the authentic leaders if the APC, if anybody disputes that, let him go to court, we will meet him there. Do the Senate President and the Speaker belong to any party? If they were members of any of the four parties (that formed the APC) you mentioned, it means they are part of this.
Speaking on Senator Rabiu Kwankwaso’s membership, Alhaji Kawu Baraje said: “Rabiu Kwankwoso is very much with this group. We were together when the national officers’ names were being put together and we held final meetings on the address of today. So there is no cause for alarm.”
Galadima noted that the incident in Kwara State where three leaders of the senatorial zones denounced the APC yesterday was just a tip of the iceberg as more people would soon join the R-APC.
His words: “You will recall that in the build-up to the 2015 general elections, some political parties and groups came together, and formed a brand new political party, the APC. This merger was based on the strong belief that Nigeria had come of age, but was severely underperforming and unable to meet its potentials for good governance. The Nigerian people entrusted power to the APC based on its promises and potentials.
“We are sad to report that after more than three years of governance, our hopes have been betrayed, our expectations completely dashed. The APC has run a rudderless, inept and incompetent government that has failed to deliver good governance to the Nigerian people. It has rather imposed dictatorship, impunity, abuse of power, complete abdication of constitutional and statutory responsibilities, infidelity to the rule of law and constitutionalism. It has failed to ensure the security and welfare of our people and elevated nepotism to unacceptable height. The APC has failed to deliver on its key promises to the nation. There is no evidence of any political will to reverse the decline of our party while leaders who have created these circumstances continue to behave as if Nigerians owe our party votes as a matter of right.
“The APC government has been a monumental disaster, even worse than the government it replaced. The political party that was a vehicle for enthroning the government was rendered powerless by manipulations and complete lack of due process in its operations.
“The last straw was the Congresses and Convention of the APC held recently. The Congresses were intensely disputed as it was conducted with impunity, total disregard for due process, disregard for the party Constitution and naked display of power and practices that have no place in a party we all worked very hard to put in place.
“There are countless cases in courts all over the country challenging the legality of congresses and even the National Convention itself. It is very likely that the judicial decisions on these cases will result in massive chaos, confusion and uncertainties. The fate of a party in this state with a few months to the elections is best left to the imagination, but it is not a fate we believe our millions of members should be abandoned to. There were parallel congresses in 24 states,
”These congresses in wards, local government areas and states all over the federation produced different sets of delegates. We therefore had an unfortunate situation where the party has been seriously factionalised and divided in not just 24 states but the 36 states and Abuja FCT.”
To Galadima, the National Convention, which was hailed by many as successful, was “even worse”. He said it was full of what he described as “constitutional infirmities”, adding that these were “so glaring and obvious that no fair minded person can claim that a legitimate and lawful executive emerged from that process”.
He said the nominees should not have been declared elected as that violated the Constitution of the APC.
”Indeed, Article 20 of the APC Constitution is very clear and explicit. It envisages a situation where if at the close of nomination, only one person is nominated, the Convention must vote “Yes” or “No”, for each candidate before he is declared duly elected,” he said.
”We all witnessed on live television and at the venue, Eagles Square Abuja, that the Convention Chairman, only put the “Yes” question to all the delegates, using words to the effect: Do you affirm? Do you agree? There was no opportunity whatsoever given to the delegates to say whether they are voting “No” for any candidate as the “No” question was never put to them,” Galadima said.
”It may well be that it the convention Chairman put the “No” Question, the voice vote for the “Noes”, may have been more. We will never know, since it was never done, contrary to the express provisions of the APC Constitution. It is therefore unquestionably clear that the 18 officers of APC that was “Elected” through this process could not have been duly elected.”
He spoke of “widespread disenchantment with the manner the party has been run, and the conduct and performance of our governments”, adding that the nPDP “made strenuous efforts to invite attention to inequities, injustice and poor management in our party without any success”. He said the group’s “good faith” was rewarded with “indifference and even contempt”.
With scenario painted above, Galadima said the original founders of the party resolved to
“take control and give legitimacy to APC to be now known as and called REFORMED-APC (R-APC).”
He noted that: “The R-APC as constituted have officers in all the wards, 774 Local Governments, and all the 36 States of the Federation, including the FCT. The R-APC also have National Executive Committee, the National Working Committee and other organs of the Party are properly constituted and functional. Some of the National Officers of the R-APC include: Yobe State – Buba Galadima (National Chairman), Kano State – Bala Muhd Gwagwarwa (National Deputy Chairman, North), Abia State – Chief Theo Nkire (National Deputy Chairman, South East), Ondo State – Hon. Eko Olakunle (National Vice Chairman South West), Kaduna State – Hon. Hussaini Dambo (National Vice Chairman North West), Kogi State – Mahmud Mohammed Abubakar – (National Vice Chairman, North Central), Benue State – Hon. Godwin Akaan (Deputy National Secretary), Oyo State -Dr Fatai Atanda (National Secretary), Edo State – Kazeem Afegbua (National Publicity Secretary) and Adamawa State – Daniel Bwala (Financial Secretary).
Others are: Jigawa State – Abba Malami Taura (Deputy National Auditor), Kwara State – Hon. Kayode Omotosho (National Treasurer), Anambra State -Barr. Nicholas Asuzu (National Youth Leader), Rivers State – Barr. Baride A. Gwezia (Legal Adviser), Katsina State – Haj Aisha Kaita (National Woman Leader), Bauchi State – Mrs. Fatima Adamu (National Welfare Secretary), Ogun State -Alh. Isiak Akinwumi (Deputy Financial Secretary), Zamfara State – Alh. Bashir Mai Mashi (Deputy National Treasurer), Abuja – Hauwa Adam Mamuda (Deputy Welfare Secretary), Sokoto State – Hon. Shuaibu Gwanda Gobir (Deputy National Publicity Secretary), Katsina State – M. T. Liman (National Organising Secretary) and Niger State – Dr Theo Sheshi ( Deputy National Organising Secretary)
Some of the State Chairmen include: Adamawa – Dimas Ezra, Anambra – Sir Toby Chukwudi Okwuaya, Bauchi – Sani Shehu, Benue – Noah Mark Dickson, Jigawa – Hon. Nasiru Garba Dantiye, Kaduna – Col. Gora (Rtd), Kano – Umar Haruna Doguwa, Katsina – Sada Ilu, Kogi – Alh. Hadi Ametuo, Ogun – Alhaji Adeleke Adewale Taofeek, Ondo – Hon. Otetubi Idowu, Oyo – Alh. Ali Alimi Isiaka Adisa, Yobe – Mohammed Burgo Dalah, Zamfara – Alh. Nasiru Yakubu, Niger – Hon. Samaila Yusuf Kontagora and FCT – Adaji Usman.