It was supposed to be a meeting of political leaders singing from the same hymn sheet. But when President Muhammadu Buhari met with APC Governors on Tuesday, April 3, 2018, most persons emerged wearing long faces and cursing under their breaths.
On the agenda was the extension of the tenure of Chief John Odigie-Oyegun as APC Chairman and those of other members of the party’s National Working Committee (NWC).
On March 27, 2018, President Buhari cancelled the tenure extension for APC officials as agreed by the party’s National Executive Committee (NEC), a month before.
Buhari said the extension of Oyegun’s tenure violated the party’s constitution and could lead to acrimony within the APC.
The extension, Buhari had said, “contravenes both our party constitution and the constitution of the federal republic of Nigeria.
“If we deviate from the constitutional provisions, we might be endangering the fortunes of our party. If the tenure of our party executives can be legally faulted, then it means that any nominations and primary elections that they may conduct, can also be faulted”, the president had added before a stunned house.
The decision of Buhari to overturn NEC’s decision on Oyegun’s tenure, led to some shouting inside Aso Villa on Tuesday, as tempers flared.
“I am not sure what happened inside the chamber could be called a real meeting, they were simply fighting,” an unnamed source told Premium Times afterwards.
When chairman of the APC Governors Forum, Rochas Okorocha and the chairman of the Nigeria Governors Forum, Abdulaziz Yari emerged, they declined questions and said nothing to the press; which is unusual after a meeting of that nature.
Governors Nasir El-Rufai of Kaduna and Simon Lalong of Plateau said the Governors had agreed “not to speak to the media.”
TheCable reports that on their way out, one of the Governors was heard screaming: “Some people think they are tall but they can never control us. Never!”
No resolution was reached at this meeting, apparently.
According to TheCable,“the president had to reschedule the meeting, asking the Governors to pick another date”.
was told that Buhari’s re-election was also on the agendaahead of the meeting. However, it is unclear if that item was touched before the meeting devolved into a shouting match.