The APC State Congress Appeal Committee for Lagos State has appealed to aggrieved members of the party to reunite against infiltration by the opposition.
The Chairman, State Congress Appeal Committee, Alhaja Fatima Umar, made the appeal at a special meeting with stakeholders to resolve all fallouts from its Oct. 16 state congress at the party’s secretariat on Acme Road, Ikeja, on Monday.
Newsmen recall that splinter groups within the Lagos APC, held parallel ward, LGA and State congresses on July 31, Sept. 4 and Oct 16 respectively, producing separate lists of party executives.
Umar said the committee was put together by the national headquarters of the party to look into any petition or complaints, any group might have after the state congress.
“We are here to right the wrongs and heal the wounds. We can always iron things out as a family. When there is unity, we can achieve great things as a family.
“You don’t throw away your family because you are upset. You don’t throw away your family because things do not go your way.
“We should not allow any disagreement within the family to distract us from our noble cause. I will operate an open door policy. Please feel free to tell us what went wrong so that we can fix it,” she said.
Umar, who led the five-man committee, urged all members to forgive one another so that the party could move forward.
“Lagos is an example of what unity in a political party can achieve. Lagos is an example of what progressive leadership can achieve.
“Please, we are here at your service and we look forward to hearing from you, and we look forward to interacting with you.
“We should not be careless enough to let wicked people to take our country back. We have started the path to recovery. We are on the path to recovery.
“I want us to keep the faith so that we don’t derail from that path,” the chairman added.
According to her, as progressives, members of the party should obey the rule, do the right things and follow due process and comply with guidelines to help the committee.
She said stay of the committee in the state depended on the volume of petitions received, saying the committee would not be in a hurry nor do shady work.
Umar said the committee would start collecting petitions from Tuesday, 10a.m to 3pm, saying submission of petitions might likely close on Wednesday.
Umar also said the committee would make recommendations to the APC National Caretaker Committee, which would take final decision.
Speaking, Mr Fouad Oki of the Democrats Group, one of the aggrieved groups, said that if nothing was done about the grievances and fallouts of various state congresses, it might have impact on the outcome of the 2023 general elections in the state.
Oki expressed hope that the committee chairperson would stand by her words of looking at the process, law guiding the process and the party constitution.
He said all aggrieved groups were trying to exhaust all conflict resolution mechanisms before taking next actions.
Also, Mr Jimi Shobayo of the Conscience Forum, another aggrieved group within the party, told the committee that there were contending factions in the state party, calling for fairness, equity and justice.
Shobayo lamented that various aggrieved groups within the party had not received results of the ward and local government areas congresses, set up by the national headquarters of the party.
“Let justice and equity be the watchword. What we are contending for is that there must be inclusiveness in the Lagos APC.
“APC in Lagos is one big family and what we are seeing today are minor issues and I believe they can be resolved. We are open to reconciliations,” he said.
Also speaking, Mr Sunday Ajayi, of the Lagos4Lagos Movement, another splinter group in the party, expressed doubt that the members would get fair treatment.
Ajayi said his group was not pleased with the constitution of groups invited for the meeting by the committee.
“We want the committee to sit tight and have a rethink, We have presented our petitions,” Ajayi said.