A pro-All Progressives Congress (APC) group, APC Great Minds, has written a rejoinder to the open letter to President Muhammadu Buhari by the sacked Director General of the Progressive Governors Forum, Salihu Moh. Lukman.
Recall that Lukman had in his letter on Tuesday, alleged plans to sabotage the scheduled February 26 national convention of the APC, referring to the Gov. Mai Mala Buni-led Caretaker Extraordinary Convention Planning Committee (CECPC) as “undertaker”, which was not doing enough to show that it was ready to conduct a hitch free exercise.
The group in the fierce rejoinder released by its spokesperson, Gbenga Olawepo, on Wednesday, described Lukman’s allegations as “breath of bitterness”, stressing that the he has been working against the leadership of the party since he was “unceremoniously removed” as PGF DG.
While expressing optimism in the ability of the National Leader of the party, President Muhammadu Buhari, to build the party into a fortress, the group urged doomsayers like Dr Lukman to “jettison their doomsday prophecies and embrace the ambience of peace and greatness that Mai Mala Buni has built around the party.”
They admonished the party members and leaders to keep supporting the Mai Mala Buni led CECPC in order to pilot the party into victory in 2023.
The rejoinder reads: “Re- APC Convention: Caretaker or Undertaker
Open Letter to President Muhammadu Buhari
“Our attention has been drawn to the foul breath of bitterness oozing from the sacked Director General of the Progressive Governors Forum, Salihu Moh. Lukman. Initially, Dr. Lukman was using the officialdom of the PGF to attack the leadership of the party he claims to belong to until he was sacked from that office by the enraged APC Governors who considered him unfit to continue to hold the office of the Director General of the PGF.
“Since the garb of the PGF DG has been unceremoniously removed from his neck, he has decided to further untame his pen of fury against the leadership of the party again, this time as a “Freelance APC Campaigner”.
“Since discipline and respect to party authorities are not his forte, our organization has decided to school Dr Lukman since he is idiosyncratic in attacking the party hierarchy.
“The claim by Dr Lukman, a hired gun of the 3rd Force proponents bent on killing the party, that there is no sign of a Convention is not only laughable but indicative of the fact that the erstwhile PGF DG is a confusion merchant. The Caretaker Extraordinary Convention Planning Committee (CECPC) rolled out a timetable towards actualizing a Convention to remember. The Committee has received reports from the Reconciliation Committee and have issued Certificates of Return to the State Chairmen.
“On the setting up of sub-committees ahead of the Convention, the date for the release of the list of Sub-Committees was slated for February 19, 2022. But Dr Lukman is already crying wolf on February 15
“Regularly, the Secretary of the CECPC, Sen. John Akpan Udoedehe, has been briefing newsmen on the level of preparedness of the Committee for the Convention. But Dr Lukman said the Committee has not been communicating. How else do you communicate? APC is an organized party and not a confused circle like the orchestrators of the 3rd Force mirage.
“The author of confusion said in his open letter that there are speculations of postponement and a grand plan to ensure the Convention does not hold. He even went further to accuse the CECPC Chairman, Gov. Mai Mala Buni of sit-tightism and an agenda to self-perpetuate. These allegations are frivolous, malicious, unintelligent, narrow and indicative of the scheming by the hirers of Lukman. Gov. Mai Mala Buni has been the best thing to have happened to our dear party at a tumultuous time. He has grown the party to 41 million members , 9 million more than the entire population of Ghana. He has digitalized the party and brought in high profile members into the party. He has successfully conducted Congresses at the Wards, Local Government and State levels. And he has reconciled the party significantly as well as set the stage for a great Convention. He would be remembered by history as one of the greatest leaders our party got to know.
“On the issue of zoning and sale of forms, we are very much aware of the fact that our forms are ready. But party leaders are working on the issue of the possibility of zoning. The issue of whether the party will adopt zoning or not must be resolved before the aspirants would know what forms to buy. You can’t make people buy forms and then zone the positions away from their zones. If there won’t be zoning, aspirants will know what to do.
“The fears of Lukman are the fears of his paymasters who drove him into trouble, ran him out of PGF Secretariat, ran him into disrepute and now running him against the tides of time. APC has never been stronger than it is now. We have 22 Governors that are committed to the party and leaders across the geopolitical zones are poised to ensure the party remains unplugged from her support base which is populated by the masses of Nigeria.
“It is characteristic falsehood that the party is waning. We are waxing stronger. It is expectedly discomforting to Dr Lukman that the party is not heading to the doom he prophesied 2 years ago.
“The National Leader of the party, President Muhammadu Buhari is working with other stakeholders of the party to build APC into a fortress. We urge the likes of Dr Lukman to jettison their doomsday prophecies and embrace the ambience of peace and greatness that Mai Mala Buni has built around the party.
“We urge our party members and leaders to keep supporting the Mai Mala Buni led CECPC in order to pilot the party into triumph come 2023.”