2023: Don’t contest election on APC platform, it’s a defunct party- PDP cautions aspirants

Joshua Omoloye, Abuja

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has cautioned all intending aspirants on the platform of All Progressives Congress (APC) for various positions in the 2023 general elections to avoid the party because “APC is legally defunct, structurally crippled and no longer a legitimate and valid vehicle to field candidates for elections under our extant laws”.

The party premised its caution on the extent of leadership crisis rocking APC and fear of legal tussle that may threaten its national convention and process towards the 2023 election.

Latching on the change of guard at the APC secretariat, the opposition party said impunity in the ruling party has exposed APC as an association of strange bedfellows.

In a statement Tuesday by National Publicity Secretary, Debo Ologunagba, the party said ‘the unilateral dismissal and replacement of Yobe State Governor, Mai Mala Buni with his Niger State counterpart, Abubakar Sani Bello by President Muhammadu Buhari as Chairman of the nebulous contraption called the APC Caretaker/Extraordinary Convention Planning Committee (CECPC) confirms that the CECPC is an illegal creation that lacks statutory powers, authority and legitimacy of party leadership.

“Mr President’s action confirms that the APC is not a political party under our laws but a Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) which became legally non-operational when on December 8, 2020, it dissolved its national, state as well as local government structures and handed its affairs over to a team of “political undertakers” known as the CECPC.

“With the absence of a National Working Committee (NWC), National Executive Committee (NEC), a Board of Trustees (BoT) or legitimate structures in the States, the APC is plagued by confusion and fierce infighting by its various warlords with two National Chairmen, multiple factions in the States and a national secretariat now taken over by security agencies”.

This, it said further validates PDP’s sustained position that the APC is just “a bunch of strange bedfellows and inchoate sailors clobbered together for remote personal gains and not for governance and public good”

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Citing Section 183 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (as amended) which bars a sitting governor from holding “any other executive office in any capacity whatsoever” while serving as a State Governor, the opposition party claimed that APC’s CECPC whether headed by Governor Buni or Governor Bello “remains constitutionally invalid”.

The PDP urged intending aspirants on the platform of the APC to note that the CECPC has no statutory authority under the law and that any State Congress or National Convention conducted by it to produce any party leadership at any level remains invalid and unrecognized by law.

“Consequently, any Governorship, State Assembly, National Assembly as well as Presidential Primary election conducted by any leadership produced by the illegal CECPC can only produce invalid candidates just like in the case of Zamfara and Rivers States in the 2019 general elections where the APC had invalid candidates due to defective primaries.

“Our party, therefore, urges aspirants intending to contest in the 2023 general elections under the APC as well as their supporters to read the handwriting on the wall and not waste their resources, time and energy in the APC”, said the party

The PDP called on Nigerians not to be distracted by the turmoil in the APC but remain focused on the platform of the PDP as it continues to take appropriate steps and actions in its mission to Rescue and Rebuild the nation from the “misrule of the fizzling APC”.

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