By Ikechukwu Okaforadi
A chieftain of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Imo State, Vitalis Ajumbe, has expressed doubts over the possibility of the caretaker committee chairman of the party, Mai Mala Buni, to conduct the national convention of the party within the stipulated time.
Speaking to journalists in Abuja at the weekend, Ajumbe, who was chairman of defunct All Nigerian Peoples Party (ANPP) in Imo State, said the time frame is not realisable because a lot of things are involved.
He said some party members have grievances caused by the leadership of the former chairman, Adams Oshiomhole, which he explained resulted in the loss of many states including Edo and Zamfara to the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
According to him, “APC is a formation of three former political parties. ANPP, CPC and ACN. They came together to form APC. The party has been engulfed by crisis, starting from the time of Adams Oshiomhole that brought down the fortunes of the party both in elective position and in management.
“I am sure that most people are aware that the centre could not hold in APC, that was why Mr President, as the leader of the party, had to intervene and this brought onboard the current national chairman, who is the Governor of Yobe state.
“They gave him a time limit and to me, that time limit is not realizable because a lot is involved and some party members have grievances caused by the leadership of the former chairman, Adams Oshiomhole. You saw how we lost many states including Edo.”
Speaking further, he said “You know I talked of the mandate given to him to conduct convention that will usher in new executives. So, what the party should do now is to give him extension. Maybe three months to enable him conduct the national convention that will usher in National leadership of the party”, he added.
Speaking on where the APC should zone the presidential ticket in 2023, Ajumbe said the party should not zone its ticket to any zone, saying the presidential candidate can come from Yobe or Zamfara as long as that is what the people want.
“The party knows what it wants. But personally, I don’t believe in zoning. The president of Nigeria comes 2023 may come from anywhere. It could be from Yobe or Zamfara. Let it be from anywhere.
“It may come from Imo. If the person is credible, provided the person that emerged was not rig in, I am comfortable with it. Let the people choose who will lead them. That is what I believe. And that is why I want my party, the APC they should not talk about zoning the presidency to a particular zone.”