Tunde Balogun, the Caretaker Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Lagos State has stated that there will be no basis for any parallel membership registration and validation in the chapter.
While urging party faithful to brace up for the assignment, he stated that the process will not be hijacked in the state.
The party chairman warned against the plot to create crisis by certain aggrieved members by conducting a parallel registration, saying that it will fail.
This was stated by the party chairman while speaking at a stakeholders’ held at the party secretariat on Acme Road, Ogba, Ikeja, ahead of the exercise billed to commence in Lagos next Tuesday.
Dismissing the antics of those pushing for factional registration, he said: “To prevent that, we want to register people freely and we will do it in a fair manner so that no one will feel cheated and neglected. I don’t see the possibility of their success. They will fail.”
Balogun said the chapter would embarked on aggressive mobilisation of party members, adding that new members would also be attracted to the platform.
He stressed: “We want to ensure that any Nigerian who is above 18 and who is willing to be a member of APC is registered. I must tell you that we are not closing our doors. We are opening our doors to other parties. There are some members of PDP who have been showing willingness and desire to join APC. They could be members and join the progressive party.”
Balogun assured stakeholders of seamless, transparent and all inclusive registration exercise.
He said there had been apprehension by members about how the exercise would go, adding that the fear had stirred some controversies within the party.
Balogun said: “I can assure you that nobody will be sidelined. I assure that no stakeholder or member will be denied to participate in the exercise.”
The chairman of the Registration Committee, Dr. Mohammed Bashir, advised against mudslinging, saying party members should work together and ensure that “nobody is excluded, nobody is left behind.”
He said: “I want us to take it easy. This is not the time of muddling muscles. This is not the time for showing too much interest, it’s not the time for quarrel, it is not the time for bickering. This is the time to work together, understand ourselves to come up with a list.
“I appeal to all of us to please take it easy. It is never a do-or-die affair. It is a very important issue. It is only when we have the party that we can claim to be whoever. If not because of APC, I would not have been appointed.
“So nothing is almost more important to me than the party. So we have to ensure that we protect the interest of the party. The interest of the party matters a lot, interest of the party first and then our individual egocentrism.”
Bashir added: “APC has its root from Lagos and we will treat all stakeholders equally and fairly. The rules and guidelines will be dictated by this registration committee and we will need the stakeholders to guide us in the various wards and local governments.”
However, House of Representatives member James Faleke (Ikeja Constituency) wondered why existing party members should be asked to re-register, instead of revalidating their membership, citing the re-registration of President Muhammadu Buhari.
Faleke pointed out that the column for revalidation of existing members was missing on the party’s membership registration form.
Also, a Lagos State House of Assembly member, Jude Idimogwu, urged the committee to ensure that non-indiegenes, including Igbo and Hausa, were given sense of belonging during the exercise.
Party leaders at the meeting included Local Government and Chieftaincy Commissioner Dr. Wale Ahmed, Caretaker Secretary Lanre Ogunyemi, Caretaker Assistant Publicity Secretary, HAbiodun Salami, Rep Rotimi Agunsoye, Rep. Ganiyu Johnson, Rep. Jimi Benson, Rep. Bashiru Dawodu, Gbolahon Yishawu, Hon. Nurudeen Saka-Solaja, Hon. Suraju Tijani, Hon. Jude Idimogwu, Hon. Sentoji David, Hon. Wale Rauf, Fatai Mojeed, and the Chairperson of Conference 57 and Chairman, Lagos Mainland local government, Omolola Essien.