The group asked a court to bar Lagos APC from party’s national convention
Despite repeated promises by the leaders of the opposition All Progressives Congress, APC, that it would not impose candidates into elective positions in the party, allegations of impositions still dogs the party.
A group of party members, known as the New Lagos Movement, has accused a leader of the party and former Governor of Lagos State, Bola Tinubu, of “unilaterally” altering the results of the recent local government and state congresses by declaring candidates who had lost as winners and also zoning elective positions in states to his preferred area of the state.
The group has asked a Federal High Court in Lagos for an injunction stopping Mr. Tinubu, other leaders of the party as well as the Lagos chapter of the APC from presenting or recognising any delegate from the state at the party’s national congress slated for the June 13 and 14 or at any time until determination of the suit.
A member of the group, Taiwo Sanyaolu, in a sworn affidavit, alleged that on the April 16, at the party secretariat in Ogba, Mr. Tinubu “unilaterally announced that he had zoned” the APC’s “governorship ticket in Lagos State to Lagos East comprising Ikorodu and Epe areas of Lagos State without any prior consultation with or room for debate by members of the party.”
He also alleged that Mr. Tinubu “declared that he had zoned party offices by allocating 30 per cent to youths, 30 per cent to women and 40 per cent to the elders and further that he had zoned party offices to various parts of the State via a process not permitting popular democracy.”
In what Mr. Sanyaolu described as a “mockery of democracy” he alleged that following the declaration of Mr. Tinubu, many candidates who had wanted to seek elective position within the party could not do so as they could not obtain nomination forms. According to him this led to a situation where many of the candidates in the state’s congress were elected unopposed.
He also alleged that officials of the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, were at the local government congresses and knew who the winners were but chose to accept the manipulation of Mr. Tinubu during the state congress.
Mr. Sanyaolu said that in complete disregard of the party’s constitution, Mr. Tinubu, “in his dictatorial and monarchical attitude” ordered the dissolution of the appeal committee constituted by the national leadership to hear grievances related to the state congress stating “that he alone would resolve all complaints, petitions and disputes arising from all the congresses.”
Apart from Mr. Tinubu, other defendants in the suit are the Chairman of the Lagos APC Registration Committee, Garba Abari; the National Chairman of the APC, Bisi Akande, as well as the APC and INEC.
Other members of the New Lagos Movement are Akinniyi Akinsiju, Michael Popoola Ajayi, Olugbenga Fakoya, and Toyin Raheem.