The All Progressives Congress has vowed to proceed with its National Convention scheduled to hold March 26 despite the rejection of a notification letter it sent to the Independent National Electoral Commission to monitor the convention.
The National Youth Leader in the APC Caretaker and Extra-ordinary Convention Planning Committee, Mr Ismail Ahmed, said this on Friday in Abuja while speaking with newsmen.
The PUNCH had reported that APC fixed for March 26 to elect new national executives to manage the party’s affairs, which is presently being managed by its CECPC.
independent National Electoral Commission had rejected a letter inviting it to an emergency meeting of the National Executive Committee of the governing party where Bello’s chairmanship, among other things, is to be ratified.
INEC’s position is contained in a letter dated March 9, 2022, signed by the Secretary to INEC, Rose Anthony, titled, ‘Re: Invitation to the emergency meeting of the National Executive Committee.’
The letter was addressed to the National Chairman, APC CECPC.
The commission drew informed the CECPC that the letter of invitation was not signed by the National Chairman and National Secretary of the CECPC, Buni and Dr John Akpanudoedehe, respectively.
It said this was contrary to the provision of Article 1.1.3 of the Commission’s Regulations and Guidelines for Political Party Operations (2018).
Faulting the letter further, INEC reminded the signatories to the letter that of the provision in Section 82(1) of the Electoral Act 2022, “which requires ‘at least 21 days’ notice of any convention, congress, conference, or meeting convened for the purpose of merger and electing members of its executive committees, other governing bodies or nominating candidates for any elective office.”
But Ahmed insisted that APC complied with all the rules and had appropriately notified INEC, saying that the March 26 date for the party’s national convention “is settled and sacrosanct”.
He said, “APC national convention would hold on March 26. I’m not only a youth leader, I’m also a lawyer. And we have served a notice to INEC for the 26th of February earlier.
“We served that notice on Feb. 5 and that was the required 21 days. If you are going to make any adjustment to that date all you need is a letter making an adjustment to the date.
“You don’t need another 21 days and that letter was written about two weeks ago, when we realised that we couldn’t hold it on February 26.
“The moment, the CECPC agreed on March 26 as the date for the national convention, that letter was written to INEC. INEC has accepted that letter. So that is long gone; is not an issue.” he said.