By Olajide Meseko
The Governor Mai Mala Buni-led Caretaker/Extraordinary National Convention Planning Committee of the All Progressives Congress, has summoned the National Assembly caucus of the party to a meeting over proposed amendments to the Electoral Act.
It was gathered in Abuja, late on Monday, that the party leadership is worried about conflicting signals it was receiving especially from its members in the House of Representatives over the clause seeking to compel political parties to choose their candidates via direct primaries.
A source in the legislative arm of government who pleaded anonymity confirmed the development. As proof of these assertions, the source presented a letter, titled “Notice of meeting: Executive /Legislative /Party Consultative Committee, addressed to the Majority Leader of the House, Alhassan Doguwa. The letter was dated November 4, 2021.
The letter which was signed by the APC National Secretary, Sen. John Akpanudoedehe read in part, “I’m directed by His Excellency, Mai Mala Buni, Chairman, Caretaker /Extraordinary Convention Planning Committee of the APC, to invite you and the APC Caucus in the House of Representatives to a meeting of the above stated Committee as follows: Tuesday November 9, 2021, time: 5pm prompt, Venue: Presidential Banquet Hall, State House, Abuja, it is expected that you will extend this invitation to the APC Caucus in the House of Representatives.
“The meeting aims at strengthening the synergy between the Executive, the legislature and the party.”
A top-ranking member of the party who also spoke to our correspondent in confidence said, “You know both chambers of the National Assembly are yet to harmonize their positions on the issue of direct primaries.
“It is the position of the party that this is the way to go but the opposition is working round the clock to frustrate this, we don’t want to leave anything to chance, we are meeting with our legislators to ensure that we don’t get any surprises.”
When contacted, the National Publicity Secretary of the Peoples Democratic Party, Kola Ologbondiyan said, “For us in the PDP, what the APC is trying to do on this issue is to export its problems to other political parties.
“We are not in a dictatorship, the beauty of democracy is the ability to present options for people to choose from.
“We will continue to explore legitimate means of ensuring that the APC does not destroy what is left of our democratic rights as a people.”