The National Working Committee (NWC) of the All Progressives Congress (APC), led by Dr. Abdullahi Ganduje, carried out the inauguration of six new members on Friday night despite facing strong protests from the party’s chapters in Kogi, Abia, and Cross River states.
The initial attempt to administer the oath of office to the officials on Thursday night was met with opposition from Governor Yahaya Bello of Kogi State, along with stakeholders from Abia and Cross River. This resistance effectively halted the proceedings.
The newly sworn-in members include Ali Bukar Dalori from Borno State as Deputy National Chairman, North; Garba Datti Muhammad from Kaduna State as National Vice Chairman, North West; Prof. Abdul Karim Abubakar Kana from Nasarawa State as National Legal Adviser; Donatus Nwankpa from Abia State as National Welfare Secretary; Mary Alile Idele, PhD, from Edo State as National Woman Leader; and Duro Meseko from Kogi State as Deputy National Publicity Secretary.
However, an initial nominee for the North Central Zonal Organizing Secretary position, Ikani Shuaibu Okolo from Kogi State, was excluded to accommodate the demands of Governor Yahaya Bello. Bello’s nominee for the Deputy National Publicity Secretary position, Ismail Yahaya, was also not included.
Ganduje, acknowledging the concerns raised by Yahaya, assured that he would be considered for other appointments. He further stated that those who were not successful in the selection process in Abia and Cross River states would also be taken into consideration for appointments in an attempt to address the grievances within the party.
During the event, which commenced around 8:40 pm, Ganduje emphasized that the APC is currently focused on organizing its internal structure, as it aims to secure victory in the upcoming off-season governorship elections in Kogi, Imo, and Bayelsa states.
Ganduje highlighted the party’s intention to establish its National Campaign Councils for the three governorship elections in the respective state capitals, aiming to establish a strong connection with grassroots supporters.
He stated, “We have succeeded. We consulted with stakeholders, governors, and others. We know there are some aggrieved people, and they are very important. We will discuss this with them, and I will speak later on that.
“We have taken a decision that every Wednesday, we will conduct our weekly NWC meeting. It is very important. Also, we have already made a resolution that our party as an institution will be active throughout the year and not just during election periods. Our party will have operational and functional offices right from the wards, LGs, States, Zonal, and national offices, as you can see. We believe we will be able to abide by all these.
“Very soon, we will launch the National Campaign Councils for our three states – Imo, Bayelsa, and Kogi- going into elections this year. Instead of inaugurating the councils here in Abuja, we have decided to do so in the various state capitals so that we can connect with the various stakeholders.
“All of you are competent. We have seen your credentials, and you have been nominated and elected through due process by the various stakeholders, and therefore, we congratulate you.
“As earlier mentioned, there is no doubt that there are some people who are also competent, but you can only fill a person.
“From Kogi state, we have Ismail Yahaya. We have taken note of him, and he will be engaged in one way or another. We have Ikani Shuaibu Okolo from Kogi state. He, too, will be engaged appropriately in our government. Mrs Obinna from Abia, she took will be accommodated. Hon. Dr Stella Ekpo from Cross River. I think she is a medical doctor. She and two others from Cross River state, according to the outcome of our dialogue, will be accommodated in our government.
“With these, I think we have achieved complete agreement and dialogue. We have achieved dialogue, and we have deepened dialogue within our party, and this is our culture. We are not dictators, but that does not mean that everyone must necessarily agree with you”, he added.
The oaths of allegiance and office were administered on the new officials by Barr. Mustapha Abubakar, a Notary Public.