A former governor of Lagos State and leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Bola Tinubu, on Saturday officially reacted to the ongoing crisis in the party.
Many Nigerians had been waiting for Mr Tinubu’s reaction to the dissolution of the National Working Committee (NWC), which membership contained many loyalists of the former Lagos governor.
In his reaction, Mr Tinubu commended the NWC for securing President Muhammadu Buhari a second term victory in last year’s presidential election. He also hailed the president for dissolving the committee early enough before the internal crisis ruined the party.
PREMIUM TIMES looks at 10 take-aways from Mr Tinubu’s statement.
1. Mr Tinubu admitted that ‘something important has gone off track’ following months of growing disagreement within the leadership of the party and also admitted that the crisis impaired the performance of the NWC, thus ‘undermining the internal cohesion and discipline vital to success.’
2. He rejected the postulation by many analysts that the APC would die soon. For him, “such dire predictions were from critics whose forecasts said more about their ill will than they revealed about our party’s objective condition.” “Predictions of the APC’s imminent demise are premature and mostly mean-spirited,” he said.
3. He insisted that the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) was leading the nation into a pit before APC took over and had a common vision of progressive good governance.
4. Mr Tinubu said many APC members have lost their balance because of their personal ambition which they allowed to greatly outweigh the obvious national imperatives.
5. The fights in the party, for him, are unnecessary and Adams Oshiomhole made mistakes that he must own regardless of being an enthusiastic campaigner during the 2019 election.
6. Mr Tinubu said there are too many people in the party that sought more destructive weapons against one another in APC with all manner of court cases. “Most of them destructive, some of them frivolous, none of them necessary. In the process, a dense fog fell upon our party.”
7. Mr Tinubu has also admitted that the intervention of President Buhari was accurate not as a mere beneficiary of the party but as one of its founding fathers. He accepted the decisions of the president. He then advised anyone interested in seeking re-election among the dissolved NEC members to do so.
8. He noted that personal ambition is secondary but not sacrosanct, saying he has not decided to run for president in 2023. Rather, he said, many “have assigned colourful epitaphs to the 2023 death of an alleged political ambition that is not yet even born.”
9. Mr Tinubu called for support for APC candidate in Edo, Osagie Ize-Iyamu, and for a transparent party primary in Ondo State.
10. He lastly said he invested in APC more than most members and despite this, “I have no problem with making personal sacrifices (and none of us should have such a problem) as long as the party remains true to its progressive, democratic creed.”