A new chapter in the life of the All Progressives Congress (APC) was opened yesterday sequel to the election and swearing in of new members of the party’s National Working Committee (NWC) with a former governor of Nasarawa State, Senator Abdullahi Adamu, as national chairman.
The ruling APC also at the convention held at the Eagle Square in Abuja, elected its zonal executives for the six geopolitical zones to administer the party’s affairs at that level for an initial period of four years.
Adamu was elected at the party’s national convention which started on Saturday and ended on Sunday afternoon and was immediately sworn in alongside other members of the NWC yesterday.
The swearing in of the new NWC marked the end of the timeline of the Governor Mai Mala Buni-led Caretaker/Extraordinary Convention Planning Committee which was inaugurated on June 25, 2020, following the dissolution of the Adams Oshiomhole led NWC.
Senator Adamu was President Muhammadu Buhari’s preferred candidate and was endorsed by the president long before the convention. Buhari had prevailed on six other contestants to step down for Adamu and his demand was respected.
In his acceptance speech after his swearing in yesterday, Adamu said his leadership would not disappoint the party but work hard to heal all wounds in the party and strengthen it to retain power in 2023.
The lawmaker said there was a need for APC members to renew their faith in the party, its leadership and constitution at all levels in order to herald a new dawn. He added that no administration in the history of Nigeria has performed as much as the current government of President Buhari in building key infrastructure and uplifting the living condition of Nigerians.
“We accept the onerous responsibility that you have placed on our shoulders and we will work hard to ensure that we fulfill your expectations for the greater good of our great party and of our dear country.
“I promise you here and now that we shall heal any wounds in our party; we shall effect lasting reconciliation among our members, and we shall go into the next general elections as a strong and united party.
“I offer my hands of friendship to all our members. I want to assure you that my colleagues and I will run an open door policy to all members of the party.
“We must resist the temptation to blow every minor personal disagreement into a major party crisis. It is time for us to do things differently. When we quarrel, we open our flanks to our rival political parties that are only too eager to exploit them for their own benefit,”Adamu said.
Other party officials sworn in at the convention
They are; deputy national chairman (North), Sen. Abubakar Kyari (Borno State); deputy national chairman (South), Chief Emma Eneukwu (Enugu); national secretary, Otunba lyiola Omisore (Osun); deputy national secretary, Barr Fetus Fuanter (Plateau); national vice chairman, (North Central), Muhazu Bawa Rijau (Niger); national vice chairman (North East), Mustapha Salihu (Adamawa); national vice chairman (North West), Salihu Lukman (Kaduna) and the national vice chairman (South East), Dr Ijeomah Arodiogbu (Imo).
The national vice chairman (South South); Chief Hon. Victor Ton Giadom (Rivers); national vice chairman (South West): Dr Isaac Kekemeke (Ondo); national legal adviser, Barr Ahmed El-Marzuk (Katsina); national treasurer, Uguru Mathew Ofoke (Ebonyi); national financial secretary, Bashir Usman Gumel (Jigawa); national organising secretary, Suleiman M. Argungu (Kebbi); national youth leader, Dayo Abdullah (Lagos) and national welfare secretary, Barr F.N. Nwosu (Abia) were sworn in.
Similarly, the national publicity secretary, Barr Felix Morka (Delta); national auditor, Senator Abubakar Malkafi (Bauchi); national women’s leader: Dr Betta Edu (Cross River); special persons with disability (PWD) leader, Tolu Bankole (Ogun); deputy national legal adviser, Barr Ibrahim Salawu (Kwara); deputy national treasurer, Omorede Osifo (Edo); deputy financial secretary, Hamma-Adama Ali Kumo (Gombe); deputy national organising secretary, Nze Chidi Duru (Anambra) and deputy national publicity secretary, Yakubu Murtala Ajaka (Kogi) were sworn in.
In the same vein, deputy national welfare secretary, Dr Christopher Akpan (Akwa Ibom); deputy national auditor, Olufemi Egbedeyi (Oyo); deputy national women’s leader, Zainab Abubakar Ibrahim (Taraba); deputy national youth leader, Jamaludden Kabir (Zamfara); national ex-officio (North Central), Oluwatoyin Opawuye (Kwara); national ex-officio (North East); Sirajo Dabuwa (Bauchi); national ex-officio (North West), Aliyu Ahmed Yako (Kano); national ex-officio (South East), Agunwa Anekwe (Anambra); national ex-officio (South South), Diriwari Akedewei (Bayelsa); national ex-officio (South West), Mrs Bunmi Oriniowo (Ekiti); zonal secretary (North Central), Yakubu Mohammed Adamu (FCT) and zonal secretary (North East), Mohammed Wali Shettima (Yobe) were sworn in.
Others sworn in are; zonal secretary (North West), Barr Bello Goronyo (Sokoto); zonal secretary (South west), Vincent Bewaji (Ekiti); zonal secretary (South East), Azobi Innocent Itapi (Ebonyi); zonal secretary (South South), Dr Ita Udosen (Akwa Ibom); zonal legal adviser (North East), Barr Dauda Chapo (Taraba); zonal legal adviser (North Central), Barr Hadiza Aliyu (Kogi); zonal legal adviser (North West), Barr Dauda Usaini Dutse ( Jigawa); zonal legal adviser (South West), Ismail Kolawole Majoro (Oyo) and zonal legal adviser (South East), Barr Mayor Ogbona Ernest (Ebonyi).
The zonal legal adviser (South South), zonal organising secretary (North East), Abubakar Adamu Musa (Taraba); zonal organising secretary (North West), Salisu Uba (Zamfara); zonal organising secretary (North Central), Ahmed Attah (Kogi); zonal organising secretary (South West), Lateef Ibirogba; zonal organising secretary (South East), Dozie Ikadite (Anambra); zonal organising secretary (South South), Blessing Agboma (Edo) and zonal publicity secretary (North east); Lamido Mohammed (Gombe) were equally inaugurated.
Also inaugurated were; zonal publicity secretary (North Central), John Okobo (Benue); zonal publicity secretary (North West), Musa Makatiya (Zamfara) zonal publicity secretary (South East), Augustine Onyedebehi (Imo); zonal publicity secretary (South south); zonal publicity secretary (South West), Ayo Afolabi; zonal women’s leader (North Central), Oluwatoyin Opawuye (Kwara); zonal women’s leader (North East), Zainab Abubakar Alman (Gombe); zonal women’s leader (North West), Hajiya Hadiza Shagari (Sokoto); zonal women’s leader (South West), Mrs Yetunde Adesanya (Ogun); Zonal Women’s leader (south south), Caroline Owugha (Bayelsa) and zonal women’s leader (South East, Mimi Uchenna Diyokeh (Enugu).
Others are; zonal youth leader (North Central), Zubairu Aliyu (Kwara); zonal youth leader (North West), Abdulhamid Umar Mohammed (Kano); zonal youth leader (North East), Jason Baba Kkwaghe (Adamawa); zonal youth leader (South East), Nkenna Anyalewechi (Abia); zonal youth leader (South West); Kolade Lawal (Ondo); zonal youth leader (South South), Comrade Ebimobowe (Delta); zonal leader of person with disability (North Central), Laho Lazarus Audu (Benue); zonal leader of persons with disability (North East), Mohammed Baba Isa (Yobe); zonal leader of person with disability (North West), Lawal Na Rago (Kano); zonal leader of person with disability (South South), Chief Edet Aziz (Cross River) and zonal leader of person with disability (South East), Dr Nwachukwu Stanley Chinedu (Imo).
In his speech, President Muhammadu Buhari gave kudos to the Governor Mai Mala Buni-led Caretaker Committee which he said had been on a rescue mission.
The president commended the committee for successfully piloting the affairs of the party in the last 18 months and organising the convention to elect new NWC members that would take over the reign of the party.
“I am glad the party under the caretaker committee has bounced back to life with the reconciliation of several key and critical stakeholders and groups, who had hitherto left the party or were on the verge of leaving the party. The reconciliation process gave the aggrieved stakeholders a true sense of belonging and assurance.
“It is gratifying that the party recorded massive and unprecedented defections under the caretaker committee administration. APC received three sitting governors, a deputy governor, senators, members of the House of Representatives and state assemblies, and other key officials from opposition parties who defected along with millions of their supporters.
“I am impressed to learn that the membership registration and revalidation exercise undertaken by the caretaker committee have recorded over 41.5 million members. This has proved that we are indeed Nigeria’s leading and largest political party. It also exhibits our numerical strength and the potential to win elections at all given times fairly and squarely.
“The successful conduct of the ward, local, and state congresses, the purchase of the national secretariat which was graciously named after me, and the review of the constitution among others, are no doubt tremendous achievements recorded by the Caretaker/Extraordinary Convention Planning Committee (CECPC),” Buhari said.
In two separate statements yesterday, Chairman of the Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF) and Ekiti State governor, Kayode Fayemi, and Speaker of the House of Representatives, Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila, appreciated the Buni-led committee for organising a successful convention. They equally congratulated Adamu and his team for emerging victorious.
Speaking earlier at the convention, Fayemi said the suit filed by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) which asked a federal high court sitting in Abuja to stop the convention is laughable and disappointing.
The governor said the PDP is afraid of competition and looking for a back door into government, adding: “They should wait for a real election; they should not look for a back door to government.”
On his part, Buni said the caretaker committee was a child of circumstance constituted by the National Executive Committee (NEC), to restructure and reposition the party.
Governor Buni said with the support of President Buhari and other critical stakeholders, the caretaker committee had collectively rescued the party and enriched its fortunes.