By Femi Oluwasanmi
The dissolution of the National Working Committee (NWC) of the All Progressive Congress (APC) by the National Executive Committee (NEC) in the recent time seems to have prevented the party from a calamitious end where disintegration would have been the next level of action if the rancorous relationship within the party had left unchecked. However, the question begging for an answer is: who will assend the chaimanship position of the party?
The National Executive Committee had on 25th June, 2020, dissolved the NWC which includes the chairman of the party, Adams Oshiomole and set up a Caretaker Committee/Extral-ordinary National Convention Planning Committee saddled with the responsibility to pilot the affairs of the party for six months and urged all members that have pending cases against the party in the court to go and withdraw them.
At the inauguration, the chairman of the caretaker committee/National Convention committee promised to resolve all the remaining crisis in the party and organize a convention that will produce another chairman of the party before the expiration of their mandate in December.
APC was formed in 2013, as a result of the merger of Nigeria’s three biggest opposition parties – the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN), the Congress for Progressive Change (CPC), the All Nigeria Peoples Party (ANPP), a faction of the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) and the new PDP – a faction of then ruling People’s Democratic Party in order to wrestle power from the ruling party in 2015.
However, since they have acquired power in 2015, the party has been facing leadership crisis which most times resuscitate their former indentities and pitched blocs against blocs within the party.
Since the formation of the party in 2013, the party has had three Chairmen, one Interim and two elected chairmen. Unfortunately, the elected Chairmen have either left the office because of pressure from people demanding their resignation within the party, suspension from the Ward level, among others.
The first Chairman, Chief Odie-Oyegun, for instance, was forced to step down in 2018 after the national leader of the party Ahmed Bola Tinibu published a protest letter in the dailies demanding for his resignation.
It was this clamours and the growing indiscipline in the party that led to the emergent of Adams Oshiomole in 2018, particularly putting into consideration his achievement in the labour union. Infact, he was branded as a reformist that will transform the party and ensure party supremacy. However, the recent drama that led to his exist shows that the problem remains the same.
Also, the proportion at which the Caretaker committee/Exta-ordinary National Convention Planning Committee seems to be blowing the “trumpet of its cardinal points of justice and fairness” shows that the Oshiomole led NWC, seems to have sacrificed justice and fairness on the alter of personal interest at some point in handling issues pertaining the party. Particularly, in the cold war that led to the exist of the Edo State Governor and his Deputy from the party.
They both left the party because the Governor was disqualified from contesting the party governorship primary in Edo State. Though, it was not unexpected because of the long time battle between the Comrade Oshiomole and the Governor but it also exposes the lacuna in the formation of the party.
Most people have described the party as the congregation of birds of different feathers flocking together. This might sounds funny and strange looking at the status of the party since it acquired power in 2015, but at the same time, it is a call for the founding fathers of the party to crystalized their differences in the interest of the party and party faithfuls. That is the reason the party members need to study the aspiring chairmen of the party before casting their vote.
A person that fit for the chairmanship position must have listening ear and be ready to take responsibility for every action taken in the party. The person must be a man of integrity and courageous person that is ready to uphold party supremacy without fear.
Because a party that has this kind of congregation where everybody want to have their ways even at the detriment of the party will need a skillful moderator to survive the crisis that will always emanating from the clash of interest. A skillful moderator in this sense is the chairman who must also be a team player.
A team player is a leader that carries everyone along and make sure that it makes people see what he is seeing even when they are not willing to do so. So, the members should look beyond money and other enticing items before electing the chairman of the party in the coming convention so that the party will not move from frying pan to fire.
Though, to have a chairman that will please everyone in the party will be difficult, but, with proper assessment it is possible to elect a person (s) that will carry 70 percent of the party members along and return the party to it’s progressive path so that the over following progress can follow all overall the country because the stability of APC is the stability of Nigeria.
Femi Oluwasanmi writes from Ibafo,