Strong indications emerged yesterday that the All Progressives Congress (APC) may be engulfed in a fresh crisis over disagreement in the zoning arrangements to be adopted for the national leadership of the ruling party ahead of the 2023 presidential and general elections.
Sunday Sun gathered from a credible source in the party that following the rejection of the proposal to zone the national chairmanship position of the party to the Southeast by the party stakeholders, the governors under the auspices of APC Progressive Governors Forum (PGF) will meet in Abuja today at night to deliberate on the zoning arrangements and other sundry issues affecting the party.
Our source also disclosed that although the zoning arrangement for presidential ticket of the party would be played down during the PGF meeting today, they would, however, deliberate on the zoning arrangement for the national leadership of the party and a possible date for the much-awaited party’s national convention.
The source also explained that since the initial tentative plan proposed by the stakeholders to hold the convention on December 17 or 18 will likely not be feasible, the governors might likely change and shift the date by one month, likely the second week of January 2022, explaining that the collective opinion was that the initial December date could be so choked with Christmas festivities.
Also revealing that since the undue pressure from certain quarters for the Southeast to take the chairmanship position has been roundly rejected by the stakeholders in the zone, including the two APC governors, and other party chieftains in the zone, our source said that it would also be resolved during the meeting.
“I can confirm to you that the APC governors will be meeting in Abuja on Sunday. They will deliberate among other things on the National Convention and zoning arrangements for the party’s national leadership.
“You know that there have been undue pressures from certain blocs of the party on the Southeast zone to accept the position of the national chairmanship.
“However, it is now crystal clear to them that the zone is not ready to accept or be intimidated into accepting that position they are imposing on them. From the governors to the least stakeholder in the Southeast, nobody bought into such proposal.
“The Southeast party caucus and leaders have taken a position, after meeting recently, not to accept the proposal to zone the party’s chairmanship position to the zone.
“And regardless of the outcome of the meeting of the governors on Sunday, the Southeast stakeholders are not likely to shift ground in rejecting the chairmanship position.
“We are equally good enough to be the president of this country not just the inconsequential position of the party’s national chairmanship they are imposing on us,” the source noted in anger.
The source also told Sunday Sun that “another thing that will constitute an item in the agenda for the meeting of the governors will be the likely date for the party’s national convention. You know that December 17 or 18 this year was initially proposed, but it is obvious that it may not be tenable because conducting the convention will be choked by the Christmas festivities. So, the governors will also deliberate on the likelihood of extending it by one month, which will fall in the middle of January next year.
“Let me also inform you that the governors will not discuss the issue of zoning of the presidential ticket for 2023. The decision to skip it is deliberate because they want to take it one at a time even though we know very well that once the issue of zoning for the national leadership is resolved, it is as good as resolving the issue of zoning of the presidential ticket.”
Recently, the report of Southeast APC leaders rejecting the chairmanship position of the party had dominated the social media platform, with the insistent that they are only interested in position of the presidency.
Quoting the spokesman of a group, Chief Chinedu Ogbonna, who also issued a threat on erring politicians, the statement read: “Igbo leaders are reaching out to other regions for their support in producing the next president in 2023 in the interest of peace, equity and unity just as the Igbo have supported other regions in the past, therefore, Igbo should not be seen hurting their own cause.
“We call on our politicians from the Southeast extraction to go all out and contest. Our people are blessed; we have enough presidential materials like former President of the Senate, Sen. Ken Nnamani, Governor Dave Umahi, Chris Ngige, Senator Orji Uzor Kalu, Dr Ogbonnaya Onu and many others.
“So, we are ready, our stand is that any politicians from Igboland who put him/herself up for the position of national chairman would be regarded as a traitor and an enemy of the Igbo people and history won’t be kind on that fellow. It is simply treacherous,” the group warned.