By Chidiebere Onyemaizu
A faction of the All Progressives Congress APC fiercely loyal to President Muhammadu Buhari is weighing options as to how best to counter another faction of the party opposed to the President and plotting parallel National Working Committee, NWC and National Executive Committee, NEC and state chapters across the federation.
Both factions are aiming at each other’s jugular. Reliable party sources told the Magazine that the coming second APC NEC meeting will either make or mar the party. One of the factions has warned against formal extension of the tenure of John Oyegun, APC National Chairman which is being planned at the NEC meeting. The party’s NEC met last month and pronounced Oyegun’s tenure which was due to expire in June extended.
However, the announcement was immediately followed by flurry of condemnations, litigations and threat of litigations by some party stalwarts on the ground that the move violated APC’s constitution.
June is three months away and so, to avoid constitutional encumbrance to having Oyegun superintend President Muhammadu Buhari’s nomination and re-election campaigns for next year’s presidential election, The source has learnt that since the APC constitution recognizes interim or acting chairman, the coming NEC meeting will avoid the word, “extend” and simply say the APC National Chairman will remain in office as acting Chairman at the expiration of his tenure.
The pro- Buhari faction insists on retaining Oyegun because it is worried that a national convention before next year’s presidential election will not only oust the former Edo state governor but will enthrone new helmsmen at the national and state levels of the party propped up by eggheads who are not interested handing the APC 2019 presidential ticket to the president.
However, formal extension of Oyegun’s tenure at the second APC NEC meeting, an insider informs, will immediately see the anti-Buhari faction take a number of far-reaching measures that will not only bring APC to its kneels but severely damage Buhari’s second term bid.
Essentially, apart from setting up parallel national and state Executive chapters of the party, the faction is also planning an elaborate convention where a substantive national chairman will be elected and President Buhari recalled and barred from seeking second term, in the manner, South Africa’s African National Congress, ANC treated former President Jacob Zuma.
Keen followers of the unfolding crisis in APC opine that one of the fall outs would be massive defections from the party to either ex ruling party, People’s democratic party, PDP or the Social Democratic Party, SDP currently being speculated as the much talked about Third Force to undo both APC and PDP and snatch power next year.