President Muhammadu Buhari on Saturday failed to state his position on the status of Governor Mai Mala Buni in the All Progressives Congress even as he called for order in the party.
Governor Buni’s position as the Chairman of the party’s Caretaker Extraordinary Convention Planning Committee has come under scrutiny in recent days.
On Monday, Governor Abubakar Bello assumed the position with Buni out of the country.
Bello’s chairmanship is backed by the President, Governor Nasir El-Rufai of Kaduna has said.
However, it is yet unclear whether Governor Bello’s chairmanship is permanent or temporary as personalities within the APC trade hot words ahead of the party’s convention this month.
In a statement signed by presidential spokesperson Garba Shehu, the President, who is in the United Kingdom for medical treatment, warned APC leaders and members to desist from name calling and backstabbing and avoid the fate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
”They failed in 16 years in power and a failure as opposition,” the President said, as quoted in the statement.
”Yes, we are entitled to our own share of dissent and intra-party discord. These are common in all parties, left and right all over the world.
”But parties splintered by competing egos destine themselves to the worst possible fate,” the President warned.
”As the country prepares for the long run up to the 2023 presidential election, we all expect a robust debate on the issues that matter and what is going in the APC should be a reflection of this, not the infighting we are seeing. There must be no more distractions ahead of the convention to choose new leaders.”
He said the APC must remain focused on developing the nation.
“We didn’t start on the note of arrogance of power, nor see government as a vehicle for self-aggrandizement, to be held at all costs, but a vehicle to bring development to all without discrimination-political, ethnic or regional to our dear country made this success possible,” the President said.
”Given all that is at a stake, we can expect contests into offices as we are now faced with to be heated although candidates and their promoters for party offices are not so much debating policy differences but differences of management, personality, character, and suitability for the most important leadership roles in our country and therefore the continent.”