The All Progressives Congress National Convention Screening Sub-Committee, on Monday, in Abuja, invited all aspirants vying for party offices at the national and zonal levels to its screening slated for today (Tuesday).
According to an invitation signed by the Secretary of the Screening Committee, Emmanuel Otagburuagu, the aspirants will be screened in two batches at the Katsina State Governor’s Lodge, Asokoro, Abuja.
Although the forms were pegged at high costs, The PUNCH reports that an aspirant can be disqualified and without a refund if he is found wanting by the screening committee.
The seven chairmanship aspirants, who have purchased forms and will are expected to be screened are Niger-East lawmaker, Senator Sani Musa; a former governor of Nasarawa State, Tanko Al-Makura; a former governor of Benue State, George Akume; an ex-governor of Zamfara State, Abdulaziz Yari; another former governor of Nasarawa State, Abdullahi Adamu; Saliu Mustapha and Mohammed Etsu.
It was, however, learnt that several APC governors were still making efforts to ensure that the chairmanship aspirants meet and form a consensus.
“All the aspirants are meeting with their respective governors and caucuses. Most of the APC governors are in Abuja already. The governors are trying to encourage the aspirants to pick a consensus candidate,” a top source in the party said.
It was also gathered that some of the governors were not keen on having Adamu as the next chairman of the APC despite reports that the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), was supporting him.
“A considerable number of the governors are not for Senator Adamu, who claims that the President is supporting him. Although he has been endorsed by some senators, some of these governors had endorsed other aspirants before Adamu joined the race. Even in Nasarawa State, where he comes from, Senator Adamu has not been endorsed by Governor Abdullahi Sule and other stakeholders,” the APC chieftain said.
The positions for those who will be screened include the deputy national chairmen, zonal chairmen, national secretary, deputy national secretary, national vice-chairmen for the six zones, national organising secretary, national legal adviser, national financial secretary, national welfare secretary, national treasurer, national publicity secretary, national auditor, national women leader, national youth leader and leader of persons living with disabilities.
Others are deputy national financial secretary, deputy national legal adviser, deputy national treasurer, deputy welfare secretary, deputy national publicity secretary, deputy national auditor, deputy national women leader, deputy national youth leader, zonal secretaries for the six zones, zonal youth leaders in the six zones, zonal organising secretaries across all the zones, and six ex-officio members.
Meanwhile, after postponing the screening by two days, the exercise is now set to hold.
The invitation is titled, ‘APC National Convention: Screening of aspirants commence Tuesday – Governor Masari’, and reads, “His Excellency, Aminu Masari, the Chairman, and Dimeji Bankole, the Co-Chairman of the APC 2022 National Convention Screening Committee, hereby invite all the aspirants to the screening exercise.”
In a related development, Governor Sule claims the APC governors and other leaders had resolved their differences and abandoned the tussles witnessed in the last two weeks.
The subcommittee was referring to a widely reported but failed attempt to usurp the National Chairman of the Caretaker/Extraordinary Convention Planning Committee, Governor Mai Mala Buni of Yobe State, by some strong interests within the party.
But in a statement released on Monday in Abuja by the Secretary of the Media Committee and the Senior Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu, the APC said the Buni-led CECPC was making efforts to take everyone along to ensure a successful national convention.
The statement read, “The Chairman of the Media Committee of the All Progressives Congress, APC Convention, Governor Abdullahi Sule of Nasarawa State, says the party’s governors have resolved their differences and have put behind them all the bickering witnessed in the recent weeks.
“The leadership of the party under Governor Mai Mala and the members of the caretaker committee are making every effort to take everyone along and I believe it is the only path for a successful convention and victory at elections. We believe in unity in diversity, and this is the mantra of our convention.”
According to Shehu, the committee is now split into subcommittees that have proceeded with their various assignments geared towards holding the convention on March 26.