Crisis is brewing in the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) as the chapter chairmen of the 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) rose from an emergency meeting, yesterday, in Abuja, condemning what they described as poor reward system in the party.
They lamented that even founders of the party and those who laboured to secure victory for the party at various levels had been abandoned and, while outsiders reap where they did not sow.
In a communiqué issued after the meeting, the chairmen said APC faithful across the country had been confronted with shame, dejection and humiliation of various degrees; stating categorically that the entire party structure has been neglected.
The communiqué was signed by the chaiman and secretary of the forum, Ali Bukar Bolari and Ben Nwoye. The duo are chairmen of the party in Borno and Enugu states respectively.
Among other grouses, they said that the chairmen who ought to be the custodians of the party in their respective states were completely ignored in respect of federal appointments.
To worsen the matter, the forum decried the running of the affairs of the party without a national secretary.
The immediate past scribe, Mai Mala Buni, who ordinarily should be liaising with the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF) in the constitution of boards of federal agencies and parastatals, left and became governor of Yobe State. The implication, they said, is that the party chairmen have been suffering in a government they worked hard to install.
They stated they chose an open later because previous entreaties to the Progressive Governors’ Forum and the leadership of the National Assembly had fallen on deaf ears.
The chairmen said: “Those who spearheaded the fight against the party, frustrated the state exco of the party in their modest efforts to secure electoral victories for the President and the party at all levels are being daily patronised and rewarded with political appointments in an APC-led government.
“We observe with utter disgust and amazement the neglect of our various election petitions in various tribunals throughout the states in terms of litigation support and case management. Each petitioner is left to bear his/her cross. The party must rise up to its responsibilities to show some concerns on what is happening to APC election tribunal petitions.
“It is sad to observe that the Federal Government has laudable empowerment programmes but majority of which are left at the mercy of opposition state governments, who claim ownership of the said empowerment programmes and empower their supporters, thereby ridiculing APC supporters as nonentities in states without APC governors. We call on the Federal Government to review their modus operandi and ensure that the programmes are being handled by APC stalwarts in order to achieve the desired objectives.
“We bemoan the plights of pioneer/founding members of our great party. Many of our founding fathers are left out of critical decision-making processes while strangers have suddenly become leaders and kingmakers of a party they worked assiduously to defeat. The reward system in this our APC-elected government has failed to look inward.
“State chairmen and their executive members have become victims of heinous crimes such as kidnappings, attempted murder and premeditated attacks, without any concern being shown by the party or government. For instance, in 2015, Adamawa State chairman died while in active party service. No official visit was paid to the family. Again, in 2018, the Cross River State chairman died in an accident while in active service for the party. The party and the government failed to ask after the welfare of his bereaved family members. The party and the government also failed to make any statement to condemn the attempted assassination of the Enugu State chairman in 2018.
“In 2019, the Abia State chairman was kidnapped on the eve of the presidential campaign in Abia State. The Abia State chairman was kept in the kidnappers’ den for many days without any words from the party or the government. No word of condemnation came from any quarters of the party or the government after he was released.
“We, therefore, urge the party and the government to take all necessary corrective measures on the issues highlighted within 10 working days from the date of this publication or await an unpleasant reaction from all levels of our great party from the polling units, wards, local government areas, states and nationwide,” the communiqué said.