From Romanus Ugwu, Abuja
The Secretary All Progressives Congress (APC) Caretaker/Extraordinary National Convention Planning Committee, James Akpanudoedehe, has said that the conventional system of one strong man in politics bullying other party members is no longer fashionable in the APC under the chairmanship of Governor Mai-Mala Buni-led Caretaker Committee.
Akpanudoedehe, spoke at the 2020 Annual Conference of the APC Press Corps held in Abuja, arguing that the party under Buni’s watch is more interested in seeking solutions to identify problems.
While noting that the Caretaker Committee has initiated certain fundamental interventions to remedy intra-party conflicts, he said: “The membership Registration, Revalidation and update aims at giving the party back to the people.
“When the people are involved in a transparent selection process, they will be more interested in the process and this cures voters’ apathy and unnecessary dissension in the polity.
“Reconciliation efforts: The APC understands that persons must be given platforms to ventilate their grievances within the party. Exhaustive internal mechanisms are being created within the party to handle grievances before it snowballs into cracks within the party.
“Reconciliation Committees are there with persons of high integrity to intervene and intercede on issues within the party. For instance, a few days ago, the South South APC CAUCUS set up a high powered Committee with H.E Chief John Odigie-Oyegun as its Chairman. It is my opinion, that if members are discouraged form going to courts, there must be avenues to air out their grievances.
“Strict adherence to rules and procedures: The functioning of political parties are regulated by our extant laws like The Electoral Act, The 1999 Constitution and the Party’s Constitution. this laws have defined procedures for certain activities and deviations from these rules and procedures are recipes for disaster.
“Recruiting Persons of integrity for party assignments: The CECPC has insisted that only persons of high moral standing and repute will be sent on party assignment to reduce the incidence of compromise and collusion with certain interests to undermine the task,” he warned.
Akpanudoedehe further noted that disagreements within members of the same political party are basically witnessed during the leadership selection processes, whether for party offices(congresses) or during nomination processes for candidates or flag-bearers.
“Where an aspirant loses in a free and fair contest, he is more inclined to accept the outcome of the contest, however where the process is flawed, the entire process becomes undermined and this leads to endless litigations between members of the same party and this affects the development of democracy.
“No man was born a slave, so resistance to oppressive tendencies is inherent in every human being. When pushed to the wall, he/she will fight back and oftentimes, the party will be distracted and this leads to avoidable loss of elections.
“These skewed selection processes could occur due to: The politics of god-fatherism: Where a certain strong man is allowed his wayin return for patronage to the party or leaders of the party.
“Non-adherence to rules: Political parties such as ours are formally structured and organized organizations with rules that govern these processes, but any circumvention of such rules leads to chaos and issues must arise,” he said.