Political drama characterizing the All Progressives Congress has continued as the National Working Committee (NWC) of the party have rejected the endorsement of Chief Victor Giadom by President Muhammadu Buhari as the acting National Chairman of the party.
It would be recalled that the President through a statement by Garba Shehu, his media assistant on Wednesday backed the embattled Deputy National Secretary as the acting National Chairman, adding he would attend the APC National Executive Committee (NEC) meeting convened by Mr Giadom because “the law is on the side of Victor Giadom as Acting National Chairman.”
But the NWC after a meeting on Wednesday night released a statement that it will not be attending the NEC meeting, stating the Buhari may have been ill-advised or blackmailed into supporting Mr Giadom.
This statement was signed by Hilliard Eta and Waziri Bulama as acting national chairman and acting national secretary respectively.
According to the statement, “We wish to unequivocally state that members of the National Working Committee (NWC) believe that the President was offered wrong advice or blackmailed into lending his weighty office to the illegality of the National Executive Committee meeting purportedly convened by one Victor Giadom on 25th June, 2020.
“We hereby respectfully implore Mr. President to kindly avail himself with facts of the matter regarding the impasse presently experienced by the Party so as to guide him in his assessment of the matter because we are sure that the President if properly advised, would come to the conclusion that the meeting convened by Chief Victor Giadom bothers on illegality and criminality.
“The National Working Committee (NWC) regrets to turn down the invitation to the illegal and unconstitutional National Executive Committee (NEC) convened by Chief Victor Giadom.
“We believe that attending such a meeting will amount to embracing illegalities and turning a blind eye to the infractions on the Constitution of our great Party.”
In an earlier statement rejecting the meeting, Bulama declared it illegal.
Bulama said: ”Our leader, the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria(Muhammadu Buhari), is renowned for insisting on compliance with our constitution and rule of law.
“It can therefore not be true that Mr. President supports the convening of such an illegal NEC by a non-member of the APC’s NWC. We urge all to disregard the said notice as neither the NWC nor the NEC has called for such meeting.
The acting national secretary described Giadom, a former the deputy national secretary of the APC, as non-member of the NWC much less its acting national chairman.”
He added: ”He (Gaidom) had voluntarily resigned in compliance with Article 31(1)(i) of our constitution to contest the position of deputy governor of Rivers State during the last general elections and has not been re-nominated by his zone (Southsouth) to return to that office.
“Further, his non-membership of the NWC has been affirmed by the courts and an order restraining him from parading himself as a member of the NWC was granted against him on June 22, 2020.”
The acting secretary explained that the suspension of Giadom by the Rivers State chapter was communicated to the NWC last Monday.
No fewer than 10 governors elected on the platform of the party, it was learnt last night, will not attend the meeting.
Similarly, many state chairmen and secretaries also indicated that they would shun the parley.