APC summons Lai Mohammed, accuses him of anti-party activities

 

Lai Mohammed

The national leadership of the ruling All Progressives Congress APC has summoned the Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed over his recent outbursts against the Kwara State Governor, Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq.

The decision was taken at Tuesday’s meeting of the Governor Mai Mala Buni-led Caretaker Extraordinary Convention Planning Committee of the party. Buni was however absent at the meeting as he was in his state, Yobe, attending to official matters.

Multiple party sources at the meeting stated on Wednesday night that the party leadership has written the minister asking him to appear before it next Tuesday.

The leadership of the party was reportedly so embarrassed by the minister’s actions that it wrote him two letters. 

sources said the second letter accuses the minister of anti-party activities, with his decision last Saturday to open a factional secretariat for the party in the state capital, Ilorin.

“The party, through the National Secretary of the CECPC, Sen. John James Akpanudoedehe has written the minister, asking him to appear before the committee on Tuesday. The party wants him to explain why he has been engaging the state governor in the manner he has done lately,” said a party source privy to the meeting.

Another source said a second letter was written the minister, querying his recent opening of a factional state secretariat for the party.

“The party views very strongly, weekend’s purported opening of a new state secretariat for the party. That is clearly anti-party. He has factionalized the party. How can you do that at a time that the CECPC is trying to reconcile all stakeholders? Well I cannot preempt what the decision of the committee will be, but any action that will be taken must be approved by Mr President who appointed him as a minister and who is the leader of our party,” he stated.

Efforts to get the National Secretary of the Party’s CECPC, Sen. John James Akpanudoedehe were however futile as he did not pick calls or reply to short messages sent to his known mobile lines.

Meanwhile, the Kwara state chapter of the party has said it is examining the recent outburst made by the minister with a view to punishing.

Chairman, Caretaker Committee of the party in Kwara state, Abdullahi Samari Abubakar disclosed this in an interview yesterday in Abuja.

He said the party may apply disciplinary measures according to its constitution.

The minister had recently claimed that he singlehandedly bankrolled the election of the governor in 2019, accusing Mr Abdulrazaq of biting the fingers that fed him.

However, Samari said: “I still see the Minister as a member of our party. Because he has not formally told us that he is moving out of the party which I doubt if he will go. He is a Minister of the Federal Republic of Nigeria where the APC as a ruling party is running the administration of government. So I would not think he will want to move out, but from those utterances he made, the party, APC as a structure has guidelines over issues. If we feel that what he said publicly amounts to disrespect or causing acrimony within the party, honestly, we are going to make sure the rules of the party are applied against him and any other person.”

Asked whether the minister will be suspended or expelled from the APC, the Kwara party Chairman said: “Well, there are guidelines like I told you. If the offense is commensurate with suspending him, or any other, definitely the rules of the party are going to apply because nobody is too big to be sanctioned. We want to have sanity in the party.”

Efforts to reach the Minister for his reaction on the issues were unsuccessful.

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