The Yobe State Governor and Chairman, All Progressives Congress Caretaker and Extra-Ordinary Special National Convention Planning Committee, Mai Mala Buni, has said the party’s state chairmen are free to express themselves freely within its constitution.
Buni said this on Wednesday in Abuja while meeting with chairmen of the party from the 36 states of the federation and the Federal Capital Territory at the party’s national secretariat.
“I finally submit that your freedom to express yourself within the ambit of our party laws and regulations in the interest of the party cannot be more guaranteed than it is now,” he said.
He appreciated the chairmen for their commitment and contributions to the continued successes of the party’s chapters across the federation.
He added that the chairmen were now allowed to run affairs of the party in their domains “without unnecessary and destructive interference from external interests”.
This, he said, was as long as the laws and regulations of the party were duly abided by.
He added that the committee, which he heads, was poised to ensure internal democracy within the party.
According to him, this was obvious in the handling of the various primaries coordinated in the last few months in the lead up to the recently held Edo and Ondo States governorship elections.
He further said the committee had embarked on massive conflict resolution in the party’s chapters across the 36 states of the federation and the FCT.
He said it had also been able to reach a compromise that demanded the withdrawal of all internal litigations against the party to allow for internal resolutions and settlement of disputes.
Buni said: “This alone is a huge positive that would not have been possible without your full support and collaboration as party chairmen across the states of the federation.”
He, however, pleaded with the chairmen to use their offices to ensure the full withdrawal of such litigations that might still remain within their domain before the next National Executive Council meeting of the party.
“You may, however, reach out to my office, in writing, if need be, for assistance on such matters that may be beyond your powers,” he said.
He added that this should be seen as part of the consensus building process to restore the party to the path of glory.
Buni stressed that the party and its management belonged to its members, adding that the doors of its national secretariat and his office were always open to the state chairmen and all members.
He said there was the need for the party to undertake a national membership register, adding that this was critical to its strength and preparation for future electioneering outings.
He added that the committee was already strategising on the national membership registration exercise.
“The responsibility is on you as able state chairmen to begin the procedure for full sensitisation and needed awareness for a successful membership registration exercise in your various states as we wait for the final briefing,” he said.
Buni reiterated the committee’s unreserved commitment to the party’s development, adding that the support of the chairmen was needed for the party to achieve its desires.
He told the chairmen that the committee since it took over the management of the party’s affairs had taken and implemented a number of open door policies.
He said the policies were aimed at revamping and improving the party’s lots both internally and with respect to its integrity and acceptance nationally.
He added that the committee had recorded a number of positive results, which included the resolution of several internal disputes in some of its state chapters.
He said the committee had also created a level playing ground for members of the party across the federation.
The Borno State Chairman and Chairman of the Forum of APC State Chairmen, Alhaji Bukar Dalori, while responding, passed a vote of confidence in the Buni-led caretaker committee.
Dalori said: “Our attention has been drawn to social media stories allegedly giving ultimatum to the APC Caretaker Committee by a group calling themselves Concerned APC Members.
“This is an unknown group in the APC, and we wonder if they are actually concerned as their name suggests.
“The APC Chairmen unanimously condemn any attempt to distract efforts of the APC caretaker committee from the commendable work it has been doing.”
He added that the the APC had recognised processes through which members could lodge any legitimate grievance.
Dalori maintained that shadowy groups with questionable agenda could not claim any concern for the party.