The All Progressives Congress (APC), yesterday, attacked the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) for condemning the Senate’s amendment of the Electoral Bill on Tuesday to allow political parties hold only direct primaries.
According to the APC Caretaker and Extra-ordinary Convention Planning Committee, John Akpanudoedehe, PDP is only pretending to be an opposition political party.
The senate had reconsidered its decision on some clauses in the Electoral Amendment Bill that were passed in July.The Senate amended clause 87 of the bill to mandate political parties to hold only direct primaries for candidates seeking elective positions, which the PDP was opposed to. It also amended the clause to let the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) determine the use of electronic voting and transfer of election results.
Akpanudoedehe while affirming the APC’s support for the Senate’s amendments, said the party would support constitutionally-permitted innovations that would improve transparency and credibility of the country’s electioneering processes and internal democracy.
“Accordingly, the sound bites from the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) should be ignored in its entirety. PDP is only pretending to be an opposition political party. Meanwhile, the patriotic disposition of the multi-partisan 9th National Assembly should be commended. It is the right thing for the National Assembly to aggregate and consider the clamour by civil societies, interested stakeholders and indeed all Nigerians on all matters requiring legislation,” he said.
The APC scribe said in line with the party’s progressive mantra, the credibility of elections had continued to improve under the President Buhari-led APC government.
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He said valid votes now count and past practices of electoral fraud inflicted on Nigerians were fast becoming a thing of the past.
He said at party level, the APC CECPC, under the leadership of Governor Mai Mala Buni, had entrenched internal democracy.
This, he said, was especially in its nomination processes as recorded in recent and successful nationwide congresses conducted by the party.
He assured that the APC as a party and government, would continue to stand for and support free, fair, transparent and credible elections across the country.
But in a swift reaction, the PDP accused the APC of destroying the country’s electoral process.
The PDP, which was reacting to a statement by the APC urging Nigerians to ignore its concern over the introduction of direct primaries into the electoral law, by the Senate, said it was not true that the ruling party has improved the electoral process.
The opposition party, in a statement signed by its National Publicity Secretary, Kola Ologbondiyan, urged the APC to accept its failure in governance.
“Our position is predicated on a statement by the APC in which it claimed to have improved on electoral process in the country, whereas what abounds in our nation is a painful story of how the APC has destroyed our economy, our electoral process and our national unity, to the extent that life has become despondent to the average Nigerian.
“We accept the fact that the APC lacks the capacity for feedback mechanism, however, the PDP wishes to bring to the attention of the APC that all Nigerians today would wish this administration had come to its end.
“Notwithstanding, our party counsel that the APC should begin to prepare their handover notes because Nigerians are not ready to endure this anguish beyond May 29, 2023, “ the PDP stated.
Meanwhile, the APC has said only internal bickering and disunity within its ranks can stop it from retaining power in 2023.
It appealed to aggrieved members that their inability to eschew bickering and misunderstanding would pose serious threat to the quest to retain power beyond 2023.
Speaking during the inauguration of the state congresses committees in Abuja, Akpanudoedehe urged aggrieved members to explore the reconciliation window endorsed by President Muhammadu Buhari to ventilate their grievances and achieve unity.
The party scribe admitted difficulties in managing a nuclear family, let alone a large political party like the APC with over 40 million members, urging members to applaud efforts by the National Chairman, Governor Mai Mala Buni in proper management of the party.
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