Amidst mixed reactions trailing one-year extension granted his national working committee, National chairman of the All Progressives Congress, (APC) Chief Odigie Oyegun has said that he would be willing to make sacrifices to ensure that peace returned to the ruling party.
Oyegun made the declaration on Wednesday while speaking with newsmen.
His assurance to extend hands of fellowship to aggrieved chieftains is coming on the heels of plot by the aggrieved camp to challenge the tenure extension in court.
A party source told Tribune Online in confidence that at the Tuesday National Executive Committee, (NEC) meeting where the position to grant the national leadership and the state chapters extension of tenure was moved, Vice- President, Yemi Osinbajo cautioned the organ of the party against it as he submitted that any decision contrary to provision of the APC 2014 Constitution (as amended) must be taken to the highest organ of the party, the national convention for an amendment of the Constitution.
Professor Osinbajo, further expressed the fear that those not comfortable with NEC proclamation might initiate litigation against the party.
Tribune Online checks revealed that Article 30 of the APC Constitution empowers only the national convention to alter the provision of the Constitution.
It reads: ‘‘This constitution and the schedules hereto can be amended only by the National Convention of the party”.
“Notice of any proposed amendment by any member or organ of the party shall be given to the National Secretary at least 14 days before the date of the National Convention. The Notice shall be in writing, shall contain a clear statement of the proposed amendment and reasons thereof it.”
‘’Notice of proposed amendment(s) shall be served on the members of the National Convention at least fourteen(14) days before the date of the meeting at which the proposed amendment is to be considered.
‘’Publication of the notice of the proposed amendments in a national newspaper shall be deemed to be sufficient notice; ‘’The Constitution or any part thereof shall stand amended if a proposed amendment is supported by at least two-thirds of the delegates present and voting,’’
Oyegun told newsmen that everybody including himself must be willing to make sacrifices, bury their differences for the party to forge ahead. He also attributed the cleavages in the party to cultural differences of its top leaders as he noted that individuals calling the shots in APC used to control regional parties and now found themselves in a national party controlling the centre.
He said: ’’I am ready to make sacrifices and all of us must do that.
‘’For me, cultural differences of members of the ruling party is also a factor and some of us have not really be exposed to national parties in the real sense of it. We are used to operating as opposition parties. For me, it is a challenge.’’
Asked to comment on the remarks attributed to Zamfara state governor and chairman of Northern Governors’ Forum, Abdul Aziz Yari that the party NEC has not really endorsed tenure elongation, the APC national chairman said he was not expecting unanimity in the position of members of NEC. “Well, I don’t want to talk on this sensitive political issue, suffice to say that whatever is happening naturally will be contrary view.
So, it will be so difficult if you come out with total, one hundred per cent unanimity but I think the reasons not wanting to hold some of these elective congresses this year is very clear, we have such a mighty of work to do this one year and each one has potential of causing crisis, it has always be anyway once there is an election, it
always create its own issue.
“We are going to have the first set of party election, the second set of election to governmental aspirants, other House of Assembly, House of Representatives, Senate, Governorship and so on.
“So, we just felt we could differ some of these issues or the party felt some of these challenges can be deferred for one year for serious task before us which is the national elections, and people gave the good examples of Ekiti and Osun last time where because of these same problem elections were due in those two states, the filling of party offices had to have differed and that was why they were not part of election.’’