By Abdul Tukur
John Oyegun is still the chairman of the All Progressives Congress, despite a request made by the President for a reverse to the elongation of his tenure made last month.
The National Executive Committee reached a a decision to extend the tenure of the current executives which includes Mr Oyegun, at its last meeting (February 27).
The extension which was to take effect from June 30 was not welcomed by a chieftain of the party, Bola Ahmed Tinubu.
Senator Tinubu, a former Governor of Lagos has made it known his disdain for the current chairman.
With his recent appointment by the President to reconcile aggrieved party members, Senator Tinubu has the perfect reason to remove Mr Oyegun.
The NEC held a meeting today, which was attended by the President and members of the Senate.
President of the Senate, Bukola Saraki attended the meeting after first holding a public hearing at the National Assembly this morning.
At today’s NEC meeting, President Buhari waded into the rift between Senator Tinubu and Chief Oyegun, saying: “I think it is important for me to speak quickly on the contentious issue of the tenure of our National and state Executive officers.
He noted that “a motion was moved at the last National Executive Committee meeting of February 27, 2018, to the effect that when the tenure of the current executives expire in June this year, they should be allowed to continue for one year.”
But to avoid members feeling “that they are being denied the right to aspire to executive position, or that internal democracy is not at play within the party,” President Buhari has demanded that the decision of the NEC should be reversed.
“On my own part, I have taken some time to review and seek advise on the resolution. And what I found is that it contravenes both our party Constitution and the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
“While the APC Constitution, in Article 17(1) and 13.2(B), limits the tenure of elected officers to four years, renewable once by another election, the 1999 Constitution of Nigeria (as amended), in section 223, also prescribes periodic elections for party executives at regular intervals, which must not exceed four years.
“Furthermore, Article 31 of our Party Constitution provides that any principal officer wishing to re-contest or contest for another post, must resign from his current post at least one month before the election.
“In this circumstance, what is expected of us is to conduct fresh elections, once the tenure of the current executives approaches its end. A Caretaker Committee cannot remedy this situation, and cannot validly act in place of elected officers.”
The president adds: “I am therefore of the firm view that it is better to follow strictly the dictates of our party and national constitutions, rather than put APC and its activities at grave risk.”
DENISAURUS News understands that the National Executive Committee has set up a committee and they would come up with a decision by today or tomorrow.
According to Bolaji Abdullahi, the spokesperson of the party, until the committee submits its recommendation, the decision to elongate the tenures of committee members stands.