APC Directive: More Groups Emerge In House, Warn Party Against Anarchy, Sedition
SAN FRANCISCO, January 27, (THEWILL) - As more reactions trail the recent directive by the All Progressives Congress (APC) to its National Assembly members to frustrate all bills initiated by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) led government including the 2014 budget proposal, screening of ministerial nominees and confirmation of service chiefs, two political groups emerged on Monday in the House of Representatives challenging the decision of the APC.
The two groups are the Concerned Members of the National Assembly made up of six members of the PDP from the three northern geo-political zones and the National Unity Group (NUG), which is a multiparty group drawing its members from the Accord Party (AP), All Progressive Grand Alliance (APGA), Labour Party (LP) and the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
At their separate media briefings Monday in Abuja, the groups condemned the call by the APC and warned against any attempt by the party and its members to breed violence and drag the country into anarchy.
The Concerned Members of the National Group at its briefing led by Hon.
Yakubu Barde from Borno State called for the immediate arrest and prosecution of the leadership of APC for making seditious remarks capable of causing anarchy and truncating the nation's democracy.
He described the order given by the APC to its members in the National Assembly as a subliminal ploy by the opposition party to prepare ground to cause disaffection and throw the country into darkness.
Yakubu Umar Barde who led his other five colleagues: Emmanuel Udende (PDP-Benue) Ka'amuna Khadi (PDP-Borno), Kaka Kyari Gujbawu (PDP-Borno), Gideon Gwani (PDP-Kaduna) and Shehu Garba Sarkinnoma (PDP-Kaduna) and) alleged that the prompting by the APC leadership to the country's parliament was a desperate attempt to make governance impossible for the president thereby preventing him from transforming the country and improving the lives of the ordinary citizens.
He said the courts remain the place for any aggrieved person or group to seek redress for any perceived infringement of rights as he called on all security and intelligence agencies to "pick up" any Nigerian or group of Nigerians who make seditious comments capable of inciting the public to violence or self-help justice.
The group enjoined the security and intelligence agencies to be at alert even as it called on all members of the National Assembly not to be hoodwinked by the APC but be nationalistic and focused in their legislative activities.
'To our colleagues in the National Assembly, particularly in the House of Representatives and more specifically well meaning members of the APC some of whom we have known to be non-partisan in their contribution to debates when it comes to matters of national interest, we urge you to look through the actual intentions of the "interim" leadership of the APC who have shown repeatedly that they care less for the welfare of Nigerians than they do for their desperate quest to take power by all means including through hate mongering and armed violence.
'We urge you to disregard any directive which consequence you know will be detrimental to the interest of a larger population of Nigerians.
Let us remind ourselves that government shut down or filibustering has never been employed by any legislature to massage the ego of a few who are consumed by their own bloated sense of importance.
'By the actions and utterances of the interim leadership of the APC, it is safe to conclude that it is an association of mischief makers.
How else can it be explained that while INEC has released timetable for elections APC is busy inciting violence and disobedience instead of putting its house in order and articulating and presenting to Nigerians what alternative they can offer.
APC has clearly indicated they they have nothing to offer but lawlessness, violence and bloodshed," he stated.
Similarly, the lawmakers advised Nigerians not to allow themselves or their children to be used by anybody to destabilise the country.
'Let no one incite you or your children to violence in Nigeria while their families are in the safety and comfort of palatial homes and schools abroad or heavily fortified mansions in choice areas of Abuja and elsewhere in Nigeria," they said.
Meanwhile, the National Unity Group led by Hon.
Bitrus Kaze at its press conference also at the National Assembly said 'Having noted that there are those anxious to heat up the system to a point of confusion, we the members of the National Unity Group of the Federal House of Representatives, rise to say enough is enough.
'More importantly we want to put on record that along with the vast majority of Nigerians we resolutely say NO to ANARCHY as being fomented by the newly registered Ail Peoples Congress.
'In taking this stand as a multiparty platform of Nigerian lawmakers committed to good governance, national stability an pan-Nigerian consensus building, we are mindful of the great political philosopher Edmund Burke's dictum that: "The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing" in the face of outrage.
'It is with the above in mind that we decry the many acts of impunity and erroneous assumptions by the newly registered All Peoples Congress (APC) that are now trying the patience of most Nigerians.
Just a week ago, in defiance of a court order, the APC in what the media next day admitted was a failed "attempt to take over N'Assembly", created a near breakdown in the chambers when the Minority Leader sought to claim that the Majority Leader was no longer the Majority Leader; in any case he was properly shouted down by most members.
'Now that APC are back at it again! It has just committed another blunder that shows its true face.
Just last Thursday 23 January, it issued a "directive" like all command-and-control anti-democratic political parties, to its members to do the following: to boycott confirmation hearings of service chiefs without whom the fight against the Boko Haram terrorists would clearly fail.
'To further boycott and hence attempt to paralyse the Nigerian economy - everything from workers' salaries to construction jobs - by not approving the 2014 National Budget now before the National Assembly even as the Senate is set to devote all of this week to debating the N4.
6trn national budget.
'Calling on our colleagues who have followed their governors into the new assemblage of strange bedfellows, to stall and if possible, to disrupt the confirmation of President Jonathan's ministerial nominees as a strategy to paralyse the federal civil service.
'Encouraging APC members to shirk their legislative duties and oversight responsibilities by tying themselves to the complicated series of unfortunate developments in Rivers State where the governor and the Police Commissioner need to settle their communications problems.
" The NUG described the directive from APC as 'a provocation and as far as legislative maneuvres go, they will once again fail.
Hence everything must be done to arrest the APC's attempt to turn Nigeria into a laughing stock.
We the National Unity Group in the House of Representatives made up of PDP, Labour, Accord and APGA members, wish to aver as follows: 'That any attempt to tamper with the 2014 budget and hence the Transformation Agenda of the Jonathan administration, would be met with robust resistance; no Nigerian anywhere will stand by and watch an opposition greedy with mischief and power lust, frustrate the hopes of tens of millions of Nigerians with regard to healthcare, schools and universities, agricultural grants and projects, foreign investment promotion, water supplies, road works, utilities and other infrastructure including electricity, solar street lights and a dozen other necessities and obligations of Nigeria as a responsible nation whose duties are enshrined in Chapter IE of the 1999 Federal Constitution.
'If this budget is not passed soon, there will be hunger in the land, and the APC plan for anarchy will have succeeded.
'We in the Nigerian Unity Group of the House of Representatives, wish to add our voice to those calling for^eace jgsed on abiding by the law in Rivers State as mentioned above, and in Ogun State as well as Ekiti.
Where APC factions have violently engaged themselves as sitting APC governors try to foreclose challengers.
We are also hoping the situation in Kwara, Borno and Kano occasioned by APC thugs forcibly taking measures against the PDP.
'Given the wrong premise upon which they are operating, we dispute the bogus claims of majority status by APC and call on our colleagues in the opposition to always strive to advise their colleagues to obey the law by abiding by judicial pronouncements, no matter how unpalatable to their political dreams and ambitions.
Section 68 is clear about elected members and their parties - you don't cross-carpet when and how you like.
'Given the extent to which defecting lawmakers are tied to the apron strings of their governors, we call on their constituents who are often mostly PDP loyalists, to step up and demand explanations from their representatives who just 30 months ago came to them under the PDP banner.
Can anyone trust turncoats who use PDP money to service their new APC masters? 'That further, we call on those purporting to act as spokesmen of the House to always endeavour to wear the toga of nonpartisanship and to always be sure what they are feeding the public are based strictly on House resolutions rather than their partisan ends.
'We therefore call on o colleagues whose sense of duty and patriotism remains unquestioned to reject the latest APC "directives" as unpatriotic bad anti-progressive.
They must reject ail efforts to destroy the Nigerian economy.
" Saint Mugaga, Abuja