Ex-LP chairman, Nwanyanwu floats APDA PDP disowns new party
Onyebuchi Ezigbo in Kaduna
The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has said it will tomorrow make a statement on status of the 95 political associations that have sought registration as new political parties.
The commission also said it would ensure the fast tracking of the continuous registration exercise in Anambra State so that all eligible voters can registers and obtain their permanent voter cards before the November governorship election.
INECâ€™s move to clear doubts on registration of new parties came just as the promoters of another political party, Advanced Peoples Democratic Alliance (APDA), led by former Chairman of the Labour Party, Mr. Dan Nwanyanwu, unveiled their plans yesterday in Abuja.
Speaking with journalists shortly after declaring open a two-day workshop on review of communication policy in Kaduna, the Chairman of INEC, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, said the commission has so far received 95 applications for registration of new parties.
He said due to the public interest on the prospect of registration of new parties, the commission has decided to meet over the issue on Wednesday after which it would issue a statement on the status of these associations.
Also, the INEC boss said the commission would update the nation on the progress made so far in the ongoing nationwide Continuous Voter Registration (CVR) exercise after its meeting tomorrow (Wednesday).
For states where the commission is conducting governorship election such as Anambra, Yakubu said there would be registration of voters continuously for three months.
In addition, Yakubu said in order to fast track the voter registration exercise before the governorship poll, the commission would devolve the registration in Anambra State to ward levels at date to be announced soon.
On the senatorial district election in the state, Yakubu expressed the hope that the issue would be resolved by the Court of Appeal when it comes up on June 12 or 13.
Yesterdayâ€™s workshop by INEC was meant to undertake a comprehensive review of its public communication policy and strategy to enhance information dissemination and positive image perception.
The commission in conjunction with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) yesterday kick-started a two-day workshop in Kaduna involving all senior management staff across the country.
Meanwhile, ahead of the 2019 general election, former National Chairman of the Labour Party (LP) Nwanyanwu, yesterday unveiled plans to register a new political party, Advanced Peoples Democratic Alliance (APDA).
Speaking during the unveiling of the political group in Abuja, Nwanyanwu said it would herald a new era in the country.
Apart from Nwanyanwu, THISDAY gathered that among those behind the proposed party is a chieftain of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Chief Raymond Dokpesi.
Nwanyanwu said the formation of the new party was borne out of patriotic desire to give Nigeria a truly progressive party.
He said although most of the existing political parties pride themselves as progressives, they are at best reactionary elements.
The LP chairman promised that the APDA would provide a level playing field for all members of the party.
He added that in the new party, the office of president would rotate between the North and South, with all the geo-political zone talking turns to produce a president for country.
According to him, the governorship and local government chairmanship positions would also rotate among the three senatorial zones in states and wards.
Also speaking at the ceremony, the interim National Chairman, Kabiru Shittu, promised that if elected into office, the APDA would give Nigeria a new beginning.
Shittu said the party would be committed to internal democracy, where party candidates would be elected through a direct primaries.
He added that 25 per cent of elective positions in the party will reserved for the youths, while the women and physically challenged will get 30 and five per cent respectively.
His words: â€œAPDA, is an actualisation of the fundamental human rights of Nigerians to determine their national destiny. It is also in recognition of the general hopelessness brought upon the people by mal-administration and the urgent necessity to give Nigerians fresh opportunities and new platforms to re-direct their electoral mandate to a dependable, committed and capable generation of leaders ahead of the 2019 general election.â€
However, the Senator Ahmed Markafi-led Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has disassociated itself from the plans to register a new political party with the name APDA.
In a statement issued by its spokesman Dayo Adeyeye yesterday, the party said speculations over its involvement in the floating of the new party is not right.
â€œIn the last few hours, we have received numerous calls from our party members , concerned citizens and well wishers on our association or otherwise with the APDA which was unveiled today at Abuja.
â€œFor the avoidance of doubt, we reiterate once again that we are not in any way associated with the new party in any form or guise. The APDA is neither an offshoot of the PDP nor its alter ego as some are speculating.
â€œThis statement is made purely to set the records straight and to avoid unnecessary innuendos ,speculations and ambiguity that may threaten the continued unity and solidarity of our party members.
â€œWe thank millions of well meaning Nigerians for their concern and commitment to the defence of our nascent democracy. In the end this democracy cannot survive without a strong and vibrant opposition,â€ he said.