The Director-General of Voice of Nigeria (VON), Mr Osita Okechukwu, has commended President Muhammadu Buhari for promoting the doctrine of internal democracy in his party, the All Progressives Congress (APC).
Okechukwu, who gave the commendation in a statement on Sunday in Enugu, lauded Buhari for launching the APC’s nationwide membership revalidation exercise at Daura, Katsina State, on Saturday.
The APC membership revalidation programme will start simultaneously across the country on Tuesday, Feb. 2.
The VON boss praised the president for upholding the internal democracy in APC and hence, discouraging the imposition of candidates in the party.
Okechukwu said: “One salutes President Buhari for promoting the doctrine of internal democracy, hence bidding goodbye to imposition of candidates in the APC during primary elections.
“I am glad that the President gave life oxygen to Section 7 (VIII) of the APC constitution which states, inter alia, ‘to promote and uphold the practice of internal democracy at all levels of the party’s organisation.
“Taking cognisance of upholding this core tenet of democracy and repositioning our great party, the President proclaimed that `no more crowning from Abuja downwards. Let the people know this and appreciate it that they are in charge of their constituencies and they are in charge of the party.
“Without any incentive, they must come out and defend the party at any level so that we, you and the party will feel secure and comfortable because the old time of putting hands in the pocket is over because the money is no longer available.’’
Besides, Okechukwu said that Buhari, as the foremost leader of APC, had undoubtedly raised the red flag to ubiquitous “Food is Ready Politicians” (FRPs) in Abuja, who surreptitiously reaped offices meant for hardworking party members.
“To avoid the huge loss inflicted on our great party by the crass imposition of candidates in the 2018 primary elections, we must avoid the red flag of undue endorsement of candidates.
“For the avoidance of doubt, if not for the crass imposition of candidates in our party in 2018, the stocks of our sister political party, the PDP, could have crashed badly.
“Imposition in APC elevated the fortunes of PDP to such an extent that today, they can afford to bandy fake news, make noise, fail to pay the bailout funds and subvert eloquent policies of the President like the Social Investment Programmes, and Executive Order 10,’’ he said.
Okechukwu called on APC leadership at all levels to strictly adhere to the President’s proclamation that the party style and structure should no longer operate from Abuja downwards but from the ward level upwards.