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APC shifts congresses, national convention timeline

The ruling All Progressives Congress(APC) has shifted the timeline for conduct of its congresses and national convention.

No new date was fixed for the two crucial exercises.

The initial timetable released by the party fixed sale of the nomination form for Ward Congress for 1st to 7th July; inauguration of Ward/LGA Congress Screening/Screening Appeal Committees for 10th July 2021; Ward Congress for 24th July, Local Government Congress for 14th August 2021 and the State Congress for 18th September 2021.

The decision to shift the congresses and the national convention of the party has since been conveyed to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

The letter by the party to the electoral body dated 6th July 2021 was jointly signed by the chairman of CECPC, Gov Mai Mala Buni and Secretary, Senator John James Akpanudoehede.

The letter with reference number APC/NHDQ/INEC/19/021/39 reads: “We refer to our letter reference number APC/NHDQ/INEC/19/021/20 dated 10th June 2021 on the above subject and wish to inform the Commission that the party has rescheduled its Congresses and National Convention to a later date which will be communicated to you.

“This serves as a formal notification under the provision of Section 85 of the Electoral Act (2010) as amended.”

The party’s National Caretaker Committee is billed to meet on Tuesday to discuss the development and fix a new timeline for the congresses and national convention.

Confirming the development, APC Caretaker Committee Secretary, Senator Akpanudoehede however said the letter to INEC was not a postponement of the congresses but a fulfillment of the Electoral Act.

According to Akpanudoehede the letter to INEC “is to cure the legal land mine occasioned by Section 85 of the Electoral Act on the issuance of 21 days notice to INEC, bearing in mind that the earlier date we released was not sacrosanct.”

A shift of the timeline for the exercise became glaring on Wednesday when the National Secretariat was unable to distribute the nomination forms for election into various party offices at the ward, local government and state levels.

The party also has to contend with challenges in membership registration and revalidation in some states before commencement of the congresses.

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