Concentrate on Rebuilding APC Rather than Issuing Dry Statement, PGF DG Tells Buni

Salihu Lukman

Adedayo Akinwale in Abuja

The Director-General of the Progressive Governors’ Forum (PGF), Salihu Lukman, has called on the Caretaker Extraordinary Convention Planning Committee led by its Chairman, the Yobe State Governor, Mai Mala Buni, to concentrate on rebuilding the party rather than resorting to issuing ‘dry’ statements against the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

Lukman, who made the call to Buni in a statement issued yesterday titled: ‘Seductiveness of Conventional Politics and the Challenges facing APC’, said there was the need to take every step necessary to ensure that the reforms going on in APC strengthen internal democracy within the party.

This, he said, would require that all activities of membership registration/revalidation, congresses, and national convention are carefully planned.

To achieve this, he said the caretaker committee should take the necessary steps to strengthen the capacity of the APC National Secretariat to implement all decisions.

According to Lukman, “This is largely about taking responsibility and communicating decisions to party members and the public. Although, considerable progress has been achieved, it is important to appeal for more consultations, coordination, and better communications of initiatives as well as all the internal reforms process.

“Poor consultations, coordination, and communication make party members contemptuous of every decision taken, which strengthens the confidence of those opposed to internal party reforms.”

The director-general noted that solution to all these was in the ability of the 13-member Caretaker Committee to work harmoniously with the required professional competence.

He said the secretary of the caretaker committee should be able to facilitate the process of planning, and one of the 13 members should be able to lead the process of members and public mobilisation.

Lukman added: “Therefore, instead of some of the dry press releases throwing banters at PDP leaders ,who are struggling to bounce back to political reckoning, the messages from the caretaker committee and the party should be about rebuilding the party.”

He said after the 2015 elections, leadership disagreements within the APC became the source of electoral strength for the PDP and other opposition parties.

The DG of Progressive Governors’ Forum stressed that most of the electoral defeats experienced by the APC since 2015 was on the account of its inability to develop and strengthen processes of consensus-building within the party, including issues of candidates’ selection.

He said it was clear that the return to the conventional approach to politics in APC commenced during the merger negotiations of 2013, and got consolidated with the electoral victory of 2015.

Lukman noted that unlike what happened in PDP between 1999 and 2007, the dynamic in APC didn’t allow any power bloc to monopolise the control of the party.

He added that it was very easy to dismiss the APC as being the same as the PDP, but noted that the APC is radically different from the PDP.