Buba Galadima, National Chairman of the Reformed All Progressives Congress (R-APC), has written to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to invalidate the election of Adams Oshiomhole as National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC).
Oshiomhole was elected National Chairman of the ruling party without opposition at the APC convention of June 23, after all his initial opponents stepped down one after the other.
According to Galadima, this manner of emergence is “very flawed and undemocratic”.
His letter to INEC also included a video recording “of the relevant aspects of the proceedings of the convention” buttressing his claims of convention irregularities.
“I write as a foundation member of the All Progressives Congress (APC), a member of its Board of Trustees, National Caucus and an automatic delegate at its National Convention, to bring to your notice that on 23rd June, 2018, the All Progressive Congress (APC) purportedly held a very flawed and undemocratic Convention for the purpose of electing its national officers following the disputed Congresses held in various Wards (May 2, 2018), Local Governments (May 5, 2018), State Congress (May 8, 2018),” the letter read.
“These congresses leading up to the National Convention of the party were marred with serious irregularities and manipulations to the extent that in at least 22 States, parallel congresses were held and different set of delegates and officers emerged. Some of the States includes: Abia, Adamawa, Bauchi, Benue, Cross-River, Delta, Enugu, Imo, Jigawa, Kaduna, Kano, Katsina, Kebbi, Kogi, Kwara, Lagos, Niger, Ondo, Oyo, Rivers, Sokoto and Zamfara.
“In particular the ‘election’ of the following officers of the party was in direct contravention of Article 20(1) of the APC Constitution, which says:
“Unless otherwise provided for: All party posts prescribed or implied by this Constitution shall be filled by democratically conducted elections at the respective National Convention or Congress subject, where possible, to consensus, provided that where a Candidate has emerged by consensus for an elective position, a vote of ‘Yes’ or ‘No’ by ballot or voice shall be called, to ensure that it was not an imposition which could breed discontent and crisis.”
Galadima argued that he attempted to resolve the issues through the internal mechanisms of the party, but his efforts were frustrated.
He said since the APC had failed to address the grievances, INEC should declare the offices of 18 officials of the party invalid and unlawful, as “their emergence is a breach of the 1999 Constitution, the Electoral Act and the Constitution of the APC (Article 20(1)).”
But Bolaji Abdullahi, spokesman of the party, responded to Galadima’s petition by saying it was “ill-conceived and therefore futile”.
“In response to colleagues asking for reaction to a letter said to have been written to INEC by Alhaji BUBA GALADIMA, I will like to point out that the action is ill-conceived and therefore futile,” Abdullahi said.
“INEC has no powers to cancel an election it did not organise. Secondly, the man calling for the cancellation of the convention did not contest for any position at the convention; therefore, he has no locus to complain about its outcome.
“Besides, if candidates were not happy with the election process at the convention, they should petition the appeals committee. INEC cannot help them.”
Galadima already led some aggrieved members of the party to form the R-APC, and went one step better by teaming up with the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and 38 other parties to form the Coalition of United Political parties (CUPP).