Crack In APC Leadership Over Muslim-muslim Ticket – The Sun
The peace of the graveyard in the leadership of the All Progressives Congress (APC) caved in on Friday when a member of the National Working Committee (NWC), Salihu Moh. Lukman, demanded the resignation of the National Chairman, Abdullahi Adamu and the National Secretary, Iyiola Omisore, to balance the same faith presidential ticket adopted by the ruling party.
Lukman equally suggested that since the President-elect and Vice President-elect are all Muslims, efforts must be made for a Christian from either the South East or South South geopolitical zone to emerge the Senate President of the 10th Assembly for equity and balancing.
He also warned the president-elect, Bola Ahmed Tinubu, to resist the pressure and avoid the mistake of undermining his government by appointing politicians with zero experience in managing public service institutions to serve as Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF)
Demanding for an emergency National Executive Committee meeting, the North West zonal chairman argued that; “it is important as a matter of strategy to broaden the scope of opportunity to rectify the outlook of the party and use it to also project the politics of Tinubu-led federal government as being inclusive.
“Also, learning from PDP’s mistake of insensitivity whereby the inability to align the outlook of the leadership of the party with the standard bearer of the party for the 2023 presidential race, which became a source of deep-seated animosity among party leaders, it is important that APC, even before May 29, 2023 when Asiwaju will be sworn in as President of Nigeria, take every step to rectify any situation that may be used to continue divisive campaigns and propaganda against the APC and its control of federal government.
“With a National Chairman, Adamu, who is also a Muslim, it will be important that every necessary step is taken to inject a change of leadership for the party so that a new National Chairman who is a Christian takes over. Part of the advantage of this is that the National Chairman could be retained in North-Central.
“Noting that the current National Chairman has done an excellent job to manage a successful campaign to win the 2023 election with all the attendant challenges, there should be no difficulty in convincing Adamu to resign as National Chairman to create opportunity for a new National Chairman of APC to emerge who is a Christian. For that to happen may require Emergency National Convention because if the hierarchy of the current leadership is to be followed, the successor to Adamu will be Abubakar Kyari who is a Muslim from North-East.
“Apart from changing the National Chairman, there is the need to also recognise that the case of Iyiola Omisore, National Secretary of the party has become a source of stronger dispute in Osun State. Unfortunately, rather than serving as a unifying factor for the party leadership in Osun State, Omisore is more a divisive factor, which may have been responsible for why APC lost the 2022 governorship election to a political mediocre whose only qualification in politics may appear to be comic dancing skill.
“To save Osun State and bring it back to its old standard of national political reckoning, Omisore would need to resign as National Secretary of APC, and a new unifying National Secretary elected. Beyond Omisore, similarly, any member of the NWC of the party who is not a unifying leader in his/her state should be changed,” Lukman demanded.
On the request to zone the main principal officers of the National Assembly to reflect the secular nature of the country, the former Director General APC Progressive Governors Forum (PGF) argued that South East and South South best suited into the position.
“Some specific recommendations may be necessary at this point. The offices of Senate President and Speaker House of Representatives would have to be locked. Given that the President and Vice President are from South-West and North-East respectively, nobody from either of these two regions should aspire for any of these offices.
“Opportunist may argue that in the last four years, the South-West also produced the Vice President and Speaker of House of Representatives. We must correct this kind of lop-sided reality as a strategic approach to dousing ethnic and religious tension in the country. With a National Chairman from the North-Central and hopefully a Christian, the North-Central too should also be excluded from aspiring for either the position of Senate President or Speaker of the House of Representatives.
“Accordingly, the positions of Senate President and Speaker should be zoned to North-West, South-East or South-South. With a Muslim President and a Muslim Vice President, it is only logical to zone the Senate President who is the number three ranking leader of government to either the South-East or South-South who would be Christian.
“Logically, the position of Speaker of the House of Representatives should be zoned to the North-West. This would have the advantage of acknowledging that the North-West gave Tinubu the highest votes of 2,950,393 representing 33.6 per cent of the votes he won. All other positions in government can be assigned by taking bearing from that,” he said.
On the position of the SGF, Lukman argued that; “while it may be important to consider including the position of SGF as part of positions to be zoned, Tinubu must avoid the mistake of undermining his government by appointing politicians with zero experience in managing public service institutions to serve as SGF.
“The office of SGF is in fact the brainbox of government and once a wrong person is appointed into such a position, the delivery capacity of government will be weak. Therefore, the choice of where the SGF will come from is as important as the qualification and public service experience of any person to be considered,” he advised.
Lukman further warned on the need to manage Muslim-Muslim presidential ticket, stressing that: “a situation whereby key decisions including issues of zoning are handled outside the constitutional structures of the party is unhealthy, unsustainably, and challengeable.
“APC need to recognise that the Muslim-Muslim ticket it provided for the 2023 presidential election, if not managed to produce desired outcome of inclusivity to broaden the foundation for wider participations of Nigerians in politics and governance across all divides, could further widen the division among Nigerians, which should be avoided.
“A successfully well-managed Muslim-Muslim would make a Christian-Christian ticket viably possible. For instance, if a Christian Northerner is to emerge as a candidate for a presidential contest, the choice of a Southern Christian as running mate should be a viable consideration for a potential electoral victory,” he argued.
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