The All Progressives Congress, APC, was, yesterday, fending off allegations of forgery over plans to navigate a constitutional leeway that would allow it keep track with President Muhammadu Buhari’s insistence on the dissolution of the current National Working Committee, NWC, of the party.
At the centre of the controversy is the allegation that National Secretary of the party, Mallam Mala Buni, is being compelled to backdate an invitation letter to members of National Executive Committee, NEC, for a meeting due next Monday.
The Monday NEC meeting is expected to formally renounce the earlier NEC motion for an extension of the tenure of the Chief John Odigie-Oyegun-led NWC.
Under the party’s constitution, a seven-day notice is expected to be given for a meeting of NEC.
However, the decision to hold the NEC was agreed on Wednesday, following meetings among the party’s governors, the NWC, and the President.
However, Article 25B(ii) of the party’s constitution stipulates that “National Working Committee may summon an emergency National Executive Committee meeting at any time, provided that at least seven (7) days notice of the meeting shall be given to all those entitled to attend.”
However, party officials had fixed the NEC for Monday to enable President Buhari attend the meeting before his scheduled departure to the United Kingdom.
The online newspaper, Premium Times, had reported, yesterday, that on account of the constitutional implications that some of the party’s governors were trying to compel the National Secretary to backdate the invitation letter to enable the NEC meeting meet with constitutional requirements.
Buni, according to the online newspaper, had gone underground to avoid being used in the contrivance. Some members of the party NEC contacted on the development, yesterday, acknowledged receiving text messages inviting them to the NEC. The text messages were reportedly sent out yesterday.
A senator told Vanguard that he got his invitation yesterday afternoon. “I just got my invitation by text message,” a senator, who is a member of the APC NEC said.
Party spokesman, Mallam Bolaji Abdullahi, however, acknowledged receiving a text message on Wednesday evening, still two days short of the expected notice.
He, however, demurred on the irregularity of the notice as he asked Vanguard to confirm from the party secretariat. “Confirm from the secretariat when the invitation was sent out,” he said.