President Muhammadu Buhari has asked the All Progressives Congress to refund the monies used in purchasing forms to aspirants who step down and embrace consensus ahead of the Saturday convention.

Buhari said this during a meeting with APC governors in Abuja on Wednesday, adding that the governors should ensure that all persons seeking office into the National Working Committee emerge through consensus.

The President subsequently gave the governors 24 hours to draw up a list of the candidates for all positions ahead of the convention.

He stated, “I have already given my own input and other recommendations on the way forward in both my February 25, 2022 meeting with the Chairman of the Caretaker Extraordinary Convention Committee and my March 13, 2022 letter to the chairman of the APC Governors Forum.

“Your Excellencies. With the convention only two days away I implore you to come together and sort out all the remaining party positions so that within the next 24 hours we can arrive at a unity list which we can take to the convention.

“Finally all those who have bought forms indicating interest and have been dropped should have their money refunded without delay.”

Buhari specifically told the governors to put the interest of the party ahead of theirs as it would be disastrous for the Peoples Democratic Party to return to power in 2023.

The President said the APC had done considerably well in the last seven years despite the economic challenges.

He called for unity among the governors, adding that this was the surest path to victory.

Buhari added, “It will be a very sad and regrettable development if these manifest gains are frittered away as a result of internal dissent and rivalry.  We must avoid narrow focus and inordinate personal ambitions at the expense of our party’s common good.  We must stop frivolous and diversionary litigation when the party’s reconciliation processes are available for settling disputes.

“We must restore sanity and purpose in the affairs of our party and lead ourselves to victory and safety.

“As I remarked when I met Your Excellencies on February 22, our aim must be to hand over to an APC government at the centre and the great majority of states.  We must not, by default, allow the PDP to get its dirty hands on the Government again and return us to the Stone Age.”

Apart from the national chairman, other positions the governors will need to pick and include on the unity list include: deputy national chairman, zonal chairman, national secretary, deputy national secretary; the national vice chairmen of the six zones, national organising secretary, national legal adviser, national financial secretary, national welfare secretary, national treasurer, national publicity secretary, national auditor, national women leader, national youth leader and leader of persons living with disabilities.

Others are: deputy national financial secretary, deputy national legal adviser, deputy national treasurer, deputy welfare secretary, deputy national publicity secretary, deputy national auditor, deputy national women leader, deputy national youth leader, the zonal secretaries of the six zones, zonal youth leaders in the six zones, zonal organising secretaries across all zones and the six ex-officio members.

 

PUNCH

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