President Muhammadu Buhari attended an emergency National Executive Committee of meeting of All Progressives Congress held virtually on June 25, 2020, below are extracts of his strong address:
I wish to express my sincere gratitude to the Ag. Chairman for convening this emergency meeting, and to all members of the National Executive Committee of our great Party for your attendance, notwithstanding the very short notice.
Fellow party members, this is a very crucial moment in the life of our Party and it is with a deep sense of concern that I stand before you today to speak as the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria who has been elected on the platform of our great Party- the All Progressives Congress.
The issues currently confronting our party at this time are such that should worry every Party member. At the moment, our great Party is faced with internal wranglings; there are on-going litigations amongst some Party members and we cannot clearly ascertain the status of certain National Working Committee members.
There are also other associated disputes as to the legitimacy or otherwise of holders of certain National Offices of the Party. The Party is also contending with Judicial claims and counter-claims, Orders and Counter-Orders and indeed Judgments and Counter-Judgments that are pre-dominantly at cross-purposes.
Confronted with these issues, it is obvious that the fortunes of the Party are currently in jeopardy, administration of our party is becoming impossible and there is consequently an urgent need for intervention to immediately arrest further drifts and internal wrangling which may lead to total disintegration. What we see clearly emerging, is that we are beginning to self-destruct. This, my dear Party members, is not just regrettable but utterly gut wrenching. The potential fallout from this conduct will not only cause us to lose the gains that we have labored for with our sweat over the years, but makes a mockery of our ability to maintain party cohesion and close our ranks. We must return to our winning ways.
Therefore, given this peculiar circumstance, and in order to err on the side of caution, I am convinced that we must take very pragmatic and guided approach to consolidate on the successes we have recorded, and to ensure that we do not, as a Party, lose our pride of place as the gold standard and pace-setting Political party in Nigeria.
We must be alive to the time and the task that is before us. As we all know, we are immediately confronted with the upcoming Gubernatorial elections in Edo and Ondo States. Therefore, this is the time to get our acts together and ensure that we are united and not working at cross-purposes.
In this regard, it is important to discontinue all litigations involving members of the Party, which are connected to issues of the Party and in respect of which several Court Orders and Counter-Orders have been issued against the Party and some specific members of the Party. This directive has been issued by the Party before, unfortunately some members failed to heed the directive. Thus, at this time, it must be made a Resolution of the Party which must be effectively enforced with dire consequences for Members who choose to ignore the directive.
Furthermore, in order to effectively resolve all disputes currently plaguing the Party, I am recommending that this meeting should carefully consider and pass resolutions on how to effectively deal with the current issues confronting the Party. Accordingly, this Meeting may adopt the developed resolutions as contained in the agenda and pass resolutions including:
- Approving the immediate discontinuation of all pending litigation(s) involving the Party and its members,
- Ratifying the primary election conducted in Edo State;
- Dissolving the current National Working Committee, and
- Appointing caretaker/ Extra-ordinary Convention Planning committee for the Party.
I believe that the issues facing us at the moment are very serious and as such requires that we take very firm and clear decisions that will be in the best interests of the Party. We must instill and enforce party discipline. Failure in taking these measures, places our party in a difficult position that negates years of struggle and sacrifices. Arising from this virtual meeting, is a charge that we chart a new course with renewed commitment and dedication for the Party and remember our pledge to serve the people of Nigeria.
Ladies and Gentlemen, members of the APC NEC, I thank you deeply for your support and confidence in our Party and in our ability to resolve our differences.
Long Live the All Progressives Congress, and Long Live the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
Thank you and God bless you all.
Edited by Opeyemi Babarinde, Lagos, Nigeria