Friday 24 March 2017

Why APC would not wash its dirty linen in public

The entourage from the national secretariat of the All Progressives Congress, APC to Speaker Yakubu Dogara last Thursday could not hide its appreciation of the loyalty the House leadership has continued to pay to the party.

For a party and its leadership that has been well despised by the executive arm of government, finding other party members in government willing to exchange banters with was indeed much appreciated.

Media reports the following day sought to present the visit of the national chairman, Chief John Odigie-Oyegun and some elements of the leadership as a working visit done to appreciate the support of the House for the APC administration.

At the end of the closed door meeting with the APC House caucus, the national chairman was reported to have proclaimed progress in the relationship with the House given the fact that everyone came out of the meeting smiling.


“As you can see we are all smiling. We discussed general issues; the budget and the progress it is making,” he stated.

“The fact that the House has been very supportive of the government and the party, we congratulate the Rt. Hon. speaker and members for the way so far they have been behind Federal Government and the party.”

However, the message conveyed by the meeting was to most purposes a delusion. It was a journey to Afghanistan.

The APC and its leadership which gave Nigeria the present government has left the real issues of concern in pursuit of shadows.

Of course, it is significant that the party leadership for the first time formally met with its House members. But that it took this long for such a meeting was not surprising given the detrimental role played by the party in the emergence of the House leadership.

For a party that has been in government for almost two years it was a sad story to note that it took this while for such an engagement between the party and the House caucus to take place.

While some would say better late than never, other commentators note that the party leadership should have concerned itself with other centres of government that are presently engulfed in much conflagration. Of particular note is the ensuing rancour within the Senate and between the Senate, and the executive arm of government. There are also issues between different institutions in the executive arm of government.

Remarkably, the conflicts are not just limited to within the various arms and institutions of government. Even within many state chapters of the party, various sounds of war are echoing. From Kano to Akwa Ibom, from Delta to Bauchi, the APC as a party is in diverse degrees of discord.

Sadly, the APC has not deemed it appropriate to address these issues.

If the party leadership had engaged the APC caucus at the peak of the crisis in the House in 2015 it could have been seen as very forthcoming. However, going to the House after the legislative body had achieved stability through its own internal dynamics could be regarded as self-serving.

Of course, few would blame Chief Odigie-Oyegun for the crisis in the various theatres of the APC government. Still fewer would claim to be ignorant of the fact that President Muhammadu Buhari regards the party, its leadership and its traditions with much contempt.

Under Buhari, the party has failed to meet its constitutional requirements for meetings, a fact underscored by the failure to hold the quarterly sessions of the National Executive Committee, NEC for more than a year.

It was understandable that the party leadership restricted its visit to the House. It was also logical to have avoided the Senate whose members are up in arms against the presidency. It was also reasonable to have avoided the presidency which is still numbed over the internal war between the Department of State Services and the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC.

With such discords around it, it is easy to see why the APC would avoid washing its dirty linen in public.

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