Members may be more powerful than their PDP counterparts.
In an apparent bid to forestall power struggle among members of its Board of Trustees, if registered, the All Progressives Congress, APC, is limiting the tenure of the Board’s chairman to a non-renewable period of two years.
Similarly, the association wants to limit the number of years a member of the Board will serve to five.
These are contained in the 57-page constitution of the association, which was adopted about three weeks after series of meeting in Abuja by the merging parties.
The constitution, which has been adopted by ACN at its April 18 national convention, was drafted by a 20-member committee headed by a former governor of Ekiti State, Niyi Adebayo.
The BoT, the conscience of the proposed party, is one of the 14 principal organs that will administer the party, according to Article 11 (A) of the 57-page Constitution of APC.
The other organs are the National Convention, National Executive Committee, National Working Committee, Zonal Committee, State Congress, State executive Committee, Senatorial District Committee, LGA Congress Committee, LGA executive Committee, Ward Congress Committee, Ward Executive Committee and Polling Unit Committee.
According to Section 13.2 (B) (ii), “The Chairman only holds office for a non-renewable period of two years after which the office shall devolve to another geo-political zone, provided that the chairman shall not come from the same zone where the President and or National chairman of the party comes from.”
This contrasts with the provisions of PDP, which pegged the tenure of the Chairman and Secretary of the Board at a single term of five years. Article 12.77 c of the PDP Constitution says “The Board of Trustees shall ensure that the Chairman and Secretary of the Board of Trustees shall subject to Article 12.81 of this Constitution serve a single term of five years.”
On the tenure of all the members of the Board, Article 13.2 (B) (i) of the APC Constitution says “The Board of Trustees shall be in office for a period of five (5) years subject to renewal for another five years.” This provision is similar to that of the ruling party, which in Article 12.77 says its members will serve a single term of five years.
Whereas membership of BoT of PDP is open to only those above 50 years but with good character, according to Article 12.76 of its constitution, APC throws the membership of the Board open to all.
There are indications, however, that members of the BoT of All Progressives Congress, APC, will be more powerful than their counterparts in the ruling party going by the provisions of their constitutions.
According to Section 13.2 (B) (xii) of the document, the decisions of BoT of APC, whose membership includes the President, Vice President and other senior officials of the party, shall be final unless it reverses itself. The only organ that can override its decisions is the National Convention. The PDP Constitution is silent on this.
Also, the BoT is given powers to convene the National Convention of the party, though with the concurrence of two-third (2/3) of its membership “where there is any situation that prevents the National Executive Committee, NEC, from functioning. The PDP BoT does not have this power.
Furthermore, in relation to the National Executive Committee, while Section 12.73 of the PDP Constitution says “Decisions of NEC shall be binding on all organs and members of the party, APC Constitution in Article 13.3 (iii) says “Decision of the NEC shall be binding on all organs and all members of the party, except the Board of Trustees and the National Convention.
Another prominent feature of the APC Constitution is the inclusion of past deputy senate presidents and deputy speakers as members of BoT, a provision which PDP frowns at.
Section 12.76 of PDP Constitution only provides that “all past and serving Presidents of the Senate and Speakers of the House of Representatives who are still members of the Party.”
Sources in the association told PREMIUM TIMES the various meetings held over the drafting of the constitution were stormy hence it took representatives of the parties in the merger plan days to resolve which organs should be superior between the BoT and NEC.
JD:It appears the APC is trying so hard not to fall into the bottomless pit the PDP found itself and this is encouraging i must say.However drawing up a constitution is one thing,allowing it work is another,and only time will tell if the apc is going to be the alternative to the hydra headed monster called PDP.