Former Vice-President of Nigeria, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, has recently faulted the national leadership of the All Progressives Congress for overruling the recommendation of its appeal panel on the Ondo State governorship primary.
The appeal panel had recommended the cancellation of the APC governorship primary in Ondo State, where a Senior Advocate of Nigeria, Mr. Rotimi Akeredolu, emerged the winner.
The National Working Committee of the ruling party, however, ignored the panel’s report and submitted Akeredolu’s name to the Independent National Electoral Commission as the APC candidate for the November 26 governorship election in the state.
Atiku, in a statement in Abuja on Wednesday by his Media Office, urged the NWC of the party, led by Chief John Odigie-Oyegun, to promote the rule of law and due process in the conduct of its affairs.
This, he said, was germane to the unity and stability of the party, adding that the leaders should stop breaking their own rules.
The National Leader of the APC, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, also in a statement, criticised Odigie-Oyegun for rejecting the recommendation of the appeal panel on the Ondo primary of the party.
Tinubu, a former Lagos State governor, who called for the resignation of the national chairman, said Odigie-Oyegun was promoting injustice in the party by manipulating the Ondo primary.
In the statement by his media office, Atiku stated that it was imperative for the national leadership of the party to respect internal democracy and democratic tenets, warning that “you cannot break your own rules without creating problems.”
Atiku added that the NWC was supposed to be an impartial umpire in the arbitration of crisis among its members in any given election.
The former vice-president stated that it was wrong for the APC to have set aside a resolution its own organ reached on the crisis.
He advised the leadership of the party to do a soul-searching on why problem arose and escalated.
According to Atiku, the party leadership should always be guided by respect for the rules, fairness, equity, neutrality and respect for democratic consensus.
The former vice-president, however, urged aggrieved members of the APC in the Ondo election to exercise restraint in seeking redress to the crisis. He also asked the leadership of the party to retrace its steps and restore confidence among the conflicting parties in the state for the overall benefit of the ruling party.