UPDATED: Tenure Elongation: APC NEC meeting ends, party yet to decide on Buhari’s call for reversal

File photo of President Muhammadu Buhari at the APC NEC Meeting

The National Executive Committee (NEC) of Nigeria’s ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) is yet to take a final decision on President Muhammadu Buhari’s call for a reversal of its earlier stance on tenure of party officials.

Mr Buhari on Tuesday morning asked the NEC to reverse its decision on the extension of the tenure of national and state officials of the APC.

The NEC last month extended the tenure of the officials by one year, amidst dissention from party bigwigs like Bola Tinubu, ex-Lagos governor.

In his speech read at the start of the NEC meeting on Tuesday, Mr Buhari said the NEC decision should be reversed as it makes the party susceptible to litigations and was unconstitutional.

Addressing journalists at the end of the NEC meeting, Bolaji Abdullahi, the party’s spokesperson, said the NEC has set up a small technical committee to advise the party on the matter.

He said the committee is expected to submit its recommendations on or before tomorrow.

Pending that time, however, he said the last decision to extend the tenure remains.

“Members of NEC thanked the president for his graciousness. Of course we had a situation because we recall that after the last NEC and this decision was taken some members felt aggrieved and they went to court.

“Of course you know that any issue that goes to court is sub-judicial. Then that also presented its own complications so the NEC decided to set up a small team that will advise the party on the way forward.

“At the moment there is no decision taken. So the position of NEC still stands from the last meeting. There is a technical committee at the moment that is looking at it. That position may change tomorrow but as it is today that is the position of NEC.”

On federalism, Mr Abdullahi said a committee between the executive, national assembly and the party will be set up to look at the report of an earlier committee set up by the party.

The earlier committee, headed by Kaduna State Governor, Nasir El-Rufai, had recommended, among others, the establishment of state police.

Mr. Abdullahi said the new committee to be established would review the report as quickly as possible and make recommendations that could enable the president send fresh bills on the matter to the legislature.

“Second issue is the issue on true federalism. The various opinions were canvassed and then both yesterday at the national caucus meeting and here, again it was agreed that a technical committee between the national assembly, the executive and the party should be set up to look at the proposals point by point as quickly as possible to enable the president to transmit to the national assembly for action. ”

Another issue discussed at the meeting was amendment of the APC constitution. Mr Abdullahi said no motion had been adopted as several observations made must be incorporated into the draft constitution first.

The party had set up a 10-member Constitution Review Committee chaired by the APC National Legal Adviser, Muiz Banire, to look into the party constitution and recommend amendments where necessary.

The committee submitted its report to the party’s National Chairman, John Odigie-Oyegun, with 85 proposals for amendment sometime last year.

“Having made the observation that those observations that were made should be incorporated into the draft constitution; therefore there was no motion taken to adopt the amended constitution.

“We believe that those amendments and proposals should first of all be updated in the amended constitution before a motion is taken for its adoption.”

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