The Publicity Secretary of the Lagos State chapter of the All Progressives Congress, Joe Igbokwe, has sharply criticised the National Working Committee, (NWC) of the party for granting the National Legal Adviser of the party, Dr. Muiz Banire, who was suspended by his ward in Mushin, a reprieve by quashing his suspension even as he took Abdullahi, to the cleaners.
In a statement he issued, Igbokwe described the decision of the NWC as hasty and amounted to an assault on democracy.
His statement reads in part: “We heard that the Acting National Publicity Secretary, Mallam Bolaji Abdullahi, said that the national leaders of APC have annulled Muiz Banire’s suspension by a local chapter in Mushin Local Government, Lagos State.
“Now, how can we allow this assault on democracy? Are we saying that local chapters of APC have no right to recall a party member at the national level for anti-party activities? Can you climb upstairs with a ladder and kick the ladder away thereafter? What are you going to use to come down?”
Igbokwew faulted Abdullahi, who said the local chapter of the party did not have powers to suspend a national officer, adding that the NWC of the ruling party had dismissed the suspension of Banire by its executive committee in Mushin Local Government Area of Lagos State.
He stressed that in accordance with the party’s constitution, only the National Executive Committee had the power to suspend a national officer like Banire.
Taking a shot at Abdullahi, Igbokwe fired: “Is Bolaji not aware that he is not yet a substantive National Publicity Secretary until otherwise stated in a Congress? Does it not amount to brigandage and playing to the gallery by naming himself the National Publicity Secretary when the position is still enmeshed in controversy?
“Is Bolaji not learning one or two lessons from the former National Assistant Publicity Secretary, Timi Frank, whose problem started from his local chapter? This emergency step into Banire’s matter cannot fly.
Just like any Constituency, whether local, state or national is empowered by law to recall or suspend any recalcitrant officer, the leaders and followers in the local chapters have the rights to do the needful when their representatives step out of the track.
Let it be made known that the National Executive Committee of our great party acted in a haste to try to rescue the sagging and battered image of Muiz Banire who is having a running battle with his political base in Lagos.
“The Lagos Chapter of APC will support and encourage our patriotic and hardworking followers from Mushin LGA to exercise their fundamental human rights without let or hindrance.”