The Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, has called for the immediate cancelation of the ongoing All Progressives Congress, APC, membership registration/revalidation exercise in Kwara State.
He made the call in his country home, Oro, in Kwara State shortly after revalidating his membership at his polling unit PU006 Oro ward-2, where he noted that the call became necessary following series of irregularities that characterized the exercise in the State.
Mohammed, however, maintained that there are a calculated attempt and policy to massively disenfranchise/de-register APC members in Kwara State as the three tendencies out of the four that make up the party in the State are being sidelined by Governor Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq tendency.
He also called for the disbandment of Senator John Danboyi led the APC membership committee to the State who he said wrongfully handed over the registration materials to an individual not recognized by the guideline who is hoarding the materials.
Recall that the ruling APC in the State was thrown into series of confusion and crisis in the last few weeks which resulted in a physical attack on some party members who sustained various degrees of injuries.
The details of Lai Mohammeds Press conference were also tweeted using the Federal Ministry of Informations official twitter handle.
Nigerians reacted to this wondering why the official twitter handle of a ministry will be used to discuss party politics.
This constitutes an abuse of office. There should normally be a clear distinction between the affairs of the ruling political party and state and government resources are forbidden for use in partisan matters.
Good morning gentlemen of the press.— Fed Min of Info & Cu (@FMICNigeria) February 15, 2021
2. As you are aware, the All Progressives Congress (@OfficialAPCNg ) membership registration started in Kwara State on Feb. 9th 2021.
The reports from our monitoring teams are out, and I wish to inform you, gentlemen, that sadly, the whole exercise did not comply with the stipulated guidelines.— Fed Min of Info & Cu (@FMICNigeria) February 15, 2021
…the Registration Officials failed to consult with all stakeholders before the commencement of the membership registration exercise, opting instead to work with only one of the four tendencies here in Kwara,— Fed Min of Info & Cu (@FMICNigeria) February 15, 2021
Ironically, the Fagbemi Group is the weakest of the four tendencies. Out of the 193 wards in the state, the group has only nine ward chairmen and does not have even one local government chairman.— Fed Min of Info & Cu (@FMICNigeria) February 15, 2021
Even at the state EXCO, the Fagbemi group has only four members.
4. The guidelines are also clear on how registration materials are to be handed over and distributed. It says officials for the assignment are prohibited from handing over registration forms other materials inclusive of registration data in a manner not prescribed…— Fed Min of Info & Cu (@FMICNigeria) February 15, 2021
…and records of the distribution are to be captured and reported accordingly.— Fed Min of Info & Cu (@FMICNigeria) February 15, 2021
who has decided to hoard them instead of distributing them to the wards (we also have evidence to back this up).— Fed Min of Info & Cu (@FMICNigeria) February 15, 2021
According to our findings, since the commencement of the registration, over 80% of the registration units do not have either membership register or membership registration slip.— Fed Min of Info & Cu (@FMICNigeria) February 15, 2021
In Oyun, the materials were given to one Olayiwola Ojo, a member of the State House of Assembly. In Shao, in Northern Kwara, the registration materials were taken to the police station, where the DPO of that station presided over membership registration…— Fed Min of Info & Cu (@FMICNigeria) February 15, 2021
… in contravention of the party guidelines.— Fed Min of Info & Cu (@FMICNigeria) February 15, 2021
It was only when the people mobilized against the use of the police station for registration that the illegality was stopped.
Even senior Kwara government officials and State House of Assembly members were made to write their details in the exercise books or foolscap sheets, in clear violation of the guidelines.— Fed Min of Info & Cu (@FMICNigeria) February 15, 2021
Even senior officials of the State Government, including Special Advisers, as well as House of Assembly members, have had to register using exercise books/foolscap sheets (we have video and pictures to corroborate this).— Fed Min of Info & Cu (@FMICNigeria) February 15, 2021
The question to ask, gentlemen, is: Where are the Registration Materials that were brought to the state?— Fed Min of Info & Cu (@FMICNigeria) February 15, 2021
However, there seems to be a deliberate policy of exclusion by the Registration Team from Abuja and their collaborators.— Fed Min of Info & Cu (@FMICNigeria) February 15, 2021
For example, at the Registration Unit of Senator Gbemi Saraki, the Hon Minister of State for Transport, which is PU 005 at Ode-Opobiyi in Ajikobi Ward of Ilorin West LGA, not a single registration official has been sighted at the designated point since the commencement of…— Fed Min of Info & Cu (@FMICNigeria) February 15, 2021
Also in Ifelodun, my local government, registration officials only showed up once and disappeared, making it impossible for many members to register.— Fed Min of Info & Cu (@FMICNigeria) February 15, 2021
There is no stronger evidence of deliberate exclusion than this. Also, if the purpose of this registration exercise is to revalidate old members and register new ones, why then are people being prevented from registering?— Fed Min of Info & Cu (@FMICNigeria) February 15, 2021
8. Gentlemen, since their arrival in Kwara State, the seven-member @OfficialAPCNg Membership Registration Committee for Kwara, led by Senator John Danboyi, seems to have gone underground.— Fed Min of Info & Cu (@FMICNigeria) February 15, 2021
These are lawfully-constituted party executives that the registration guidelines stipulate should not only be consulted but carried along during the exercise.— Fed Min of Info & Cu (@FMICNigeria) February 15, 2021
Based on the communication that I have received from APC stakeholders across the state on the report of the monitoring teams, and the glaring— Fed Min of Info & Cu (@FMICNigeria) February 15, 2021
non-compliance with the stipulated guidelines for the membership,
A) – Immediate cancellation of the APC Membership Registration Exercise in Kwara State and the putting in place of a process to ensure the conduct of a credible and fair exercise that will enjoy the support and confidence of all.— Fed Min of Info & Cu (@FMICNigeria) February 15, 2021
D) – A thorough investigation into the botched membership registration exercise by the Senator John Danboyi-led committee.— Fed Min of Info & Cu (@FMICNigeria) February 15, 2021
Lai Mohammed is crying on twitter, what our business with party registration? Why is the twitter handle of— Emma ik Umeh (Tcee )🇳🇬 (@emmaikumeh) February 15, 2021
Federal Ministry Of Information and Culture, twitting about APC issues?
Abi does Lai want Ponmo and boli? The abuse of public trust in this govt is embarrassing. https://t.co/QGPirKrszI
Why is this on the handle of the Federal Ministry of Information and Culture? Is the Ministry supposed to be regaling us on APC party shenanigans? Is the Minister supposed to be using public resources to wail? https://t.co/oLNTElwaA0— Amara Nwankpa (@Nwankpa_A) February 15, 2021
Why is a govt account reporting a party issue? You guys are unprofessional— Oke Umurhohwo (@OkeStalyf) February 15, 2021
If FMoIC can't differentiate between official matter and personal issues, I will unfollow you. Not just me alone but with other patriotic Nigerians following you. We demand an apology Now!— S. M. Baidu (@SMBaidu) February 15, 2021
You just had to use a verified government Twitter handle to rant about APC in Kwara State. It’s the Federal Ministry of Information and Culture an extension of APC? 😏😏— PETER OBI’s FRUGALITY (@invincible_uche) February 15, 2021
Why would this handle be reporting party’s affair on the official handle of government ministry?— Gbenga Taiwo (Esq) (@Juliobam22) February 15, 2021
This is not civil.