Former All Progressives Congress (APC) Interim National Chairman Mr Bisi Akande has been named to lead the party’s national reconciliation committee. It will be inaugurated today (Tuesday).
He replaces Senate President Ahmed Lawan who was announced by the party’s leadership as chairman of a similar panel that was never inaugurated.
According to a statement by party spokesman Mr Lanre Issa-Onilu, the panel was reconstituted following a review of its membership by President Muhammadu Buhari.
The Akande-led committee of 12 has a mandate to reconcile all aggrieved members of the party across the country. The committee has Mr John Enoh as secretary.
Issa-Onilu, who announced the committee’s reconstitution, said members of the new panel will be inaugurated today.
The Lawan-led panel was set up in accordance with the directive of the National Executive Committee (NEC) of the party.
But Edo State Governor Godwin Obaseki, who is locked in a battle with the party’s National Chairman and his predecessor Mr Adams Oshiomhole, kicked against the membership of the Lawan panel.
The governor argued it was improper for Oshiomhole, who is party to the crisis in the local chapter of APC in Edo State to constitute a committee to reconcile aggrieved members.
Issa-Onilu said in the statement on Monday: “Mr Buhari and the leadership of All Progressives Congress (APC) have reviewed the membership of the party’s National Reconciliation Committee.
“The committee is empowered to address grievances of party members across the country and resolve existing conflicts, all with a view to fostering oneness, strengthen the party for better governance and ensure unity of purpose within the party.”
Other members of the panel are: Governors Gboyega Oyetola (Osun) and Abubakar Sani Bello (Niger); Senate Leader Yahaya Abdullahi; House of Representatives Deputy Speaker Ahmed Idris Wase and former Nasarawa State Governor Umaru Tanko Al-Makura.
They include: former Borno State governor Kashim Shettima; Minister of State for the Environment Mrs Sharon Ikeazor; Mr Nasiru Aliko Koki; Mrs Khairat Gwadabe-Abdulrazak and Mrs Binta Garba.
Edo State government reacted to the panel reconstitution in a statement by Secretary to the State Government (SSG), Mr Osarodion Ogie, who described it as a welcome development.
Expressing gratitude to the President and applauding the reconstitution, the government expressed confidence in the ability of the Akande-led panel to deliver on its mandate to restore peace and unity in the party.
“The state government is grateful to President Muhammadu Buhari for putting together a committee of persons with proven integrity and the forthrightness needed to deliver on this very sensitive national assignment,” Ogie said in the statement.
He added: “With the person of the renowned statesman and leader of APC, Akande, heading this committee, and other very worthy leaders of our party as members, we have no doubt that justice will not only be done but seen to be done in the execution of the mandate of this committee.
“We hereby restate our full commitment to peace in APC both in our state and across the country.
“Despite the many challenges, APC has remained strong in Edo State and in Nigeria, but we are certain that at the end of this exercise, the party will become even stronger and continue to lead our great country with its progressive ideals for many years to come.”