Femi Folaranmi, Yenagoa
Fresh facts have revealed that leaders of the All Progressive Congress (APC) in Bayelsa State have decided to retain the present zoning arrangement in line with the decision of the National Executive Committee (NEC) of the party.
The APC in the state led by former governor Timipre Sylva and the Minister of State for Agriculture and Rural Development, Senator Heineken Lokpobiri, is fingered in this arrangement ahead of the congresses of the party.
Investigations revealed that attempt to tinker with the zoning arrangement by moving the chairmanship of the party to Bayelsa West has been resisted by leaders who have insisted that the position should remain in Bayelsa Central.
Sources at the party said former Governor Sylva and Lokpobiri are on the same page on the zoning arrangement and are shopping for credible party men to fill the positions in the bid to restructure the party and prepare for the 2019 election.
“The two party leaders are on the same page on the issue of strong party structure with due respect to the resolutions last taken during the National Executive Committee of the party in Abuja. I think what the party leaders are trying to do is to search for more vibrant and purposeful party members to support the incumbent Members of the State Executive committee. The SEC will be made up of more intellectuals and politicians.”
The acting Chairman of the party, Mr. Joseph Fafi, while reacting to moves to alter the zoning arrangement, urged party members to ignore it as the decision on the zoning has already been decided by NEC.
According to him no official stakeholder meeting of the party was held to alter the zoning arrangement of the party.
In the words of Fafi, “Apart from the fact that no official stakeholders meeting to zone party offices ever held, the guidelines allows only persons from the Central Senatorial District to contest for the office Chairman of the party in the state. This is a NEC decision and no stakeholder can alter it.
“The stability of the party is very paramount. Already local government committees to conduct the ward and LGA congresses are being set up. I want to assure all party faithful of a stronger and all inclusive APC in the state”