APC crisis worsens, two groups claim party leadership in Niger

By Ummi Ismaeel,

With the crisis rocking the ruling All Progressive Congress (APC) in Niger State, two groups have finally emerged – all claiming to be the authentic side.
The groups are the one led by the embattled chairman, Engineer Mohammed Jibrin Imam, and the other by Alhaji Aliyu Saidu.
Already, Saidu had been sworn-in on an acting capacity in Minna, while the group led by the embattled chairman was accused of financial misappropriation with the party Secretary, Barrister Mohammed Liman; and Treasurer, Alhaji Shafi'i Abdulrahman.
But the state APC Secretary, Mohammad Liman, while responding to the allegation, insisted that the party remained intact on the leadership of Imam.
His words: “We remain intact as APC officials in Niger State.
‘‘The meeting by some persons who have no mandate for calling for a state meeting in the first place is illegal.
“Our removal is null and void because a case was filed on same issue at High Court, Bida by one Suleiman Abdullahi (State Assistant Youth Leader) and another against the said three officials who had gone ahead and constituted himself as the Acting Secretary having taken laws into his hands”.
Liman also cautioned those arrogating powers to themselves to exercise restraints.
According to him, “The state party executive remained intact, unshakable and nothing has changed. I urge those arrogating powers to themselve to restrain from indulging in such illegality”.

He said that the party chairman would soon address all party members in the state, adding that by the virtue of Article 21 D (v) at page 86 of the APC Constitution, the said Suleiman Abdullahi had been expelled from the party having filled a suit against the party and its officials without exhausting all internal avenues for redress.

“An expelled APC member cannot hold any party position during the period of expulsion”, the secretary said, adding that ‘the case was heard on Thursday and adjourned for further hearing next week Friday 10/7/2020’.

The aggrieved members, according to him, have failed to follow the party constitution hence cannot pass a vote of no confidence of the chairman and two others as alleged. “Article 21 D (iv) on page 87 of the APC Constitution is very clear and ambiguous.
“It says that for a vote of no confidence to be passed on any official (s) at any level of the party, he or she must be established that he has failed to discharge his responsibility or neglect or dereliction of duty or misconduct and must be accorded fair hearing and members present in the meeting must vote by two third of majority”.

Liman further emphasized that in case of any misconduct or any of the cases mentioned, a committee must be constituted by the party to investigate the matter, serve allegation notice to that effect but none of those processes were followed as laid down by the party.

He stated that recently President Muhammadu Buhari during the inauguration of Caretaker Committee of the party directed that all cases filed in the law courts by party members be withdrawn.
He said that of Niger State was not an exception.
While calling for calm among party members in Niger State, Liman urged them to remain focused and law-abiding informing them that the state APC Chairman, Muhammad Jibrin Imam, remained the leader; and the Secretary, Barrister Mohammad Liman, as well the Treasurer, Alhaji Shafi'i Abdulrahman positions remained intact.

Meanwhile, some APC members in a statement yesterday passed a vote of no confidence on the State Chairman, Engineer Mohammad Jibrin Imam, Secretary Barrister Mohammed Liman and Treasurer Alhaji Shafi'i Abdulrahman over alleged financial misappropriation.

The party's Legal Adviser, Barrister Khalid who swore-in the new executive on acting capacity pending the time the three positions of chairman, Secretary and Treasurer will be filled to pilot the affairs of the party.
Khalid gave the names of the Acting Chairman as; Alhaji Aliyu Saidu from Shiroro Local Government Area; Acting Secretary as Suleiman Abdullahi, while Suleiman Madaki from Wushishi is the Acting Tressurer.

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