By Olasunkanmi Akoni
LAGOS—FORMER Minister of Foreign Affairs, Chief Tom Ikimi, has been appointed chairman of a 19-member committee to negotiate the Action Congress of Nigeria, ACN, planned merger with Congress for Progressive Change, CPC, and All Nigeria Peoples Party, ANPP.
ACN National Publicity Secretary, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, in a statement, yesterday, said the committee, had as members former Governor of Ogun State, Aremo Olusegun Osoba, former Governor of Ekiti State, Otunba Niyi Adebayo, Governors Babatunde Fashola and Rauf Aregbesola, Sen. John Akpanudoedehe, Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu, Senator George Akume and Abike Dabiri-Erewa.
Other members are Sen. Lawal Shuaibu, Chief Audu Ogbe, Chief Achike Udenwa, Chief John Odigie-Oyegun, Senator Chris Ngige, Dr. Usman Bugaje, Hadjia Rabiat Eshak, Dr. Ibrahim Lame, Alhaji Yusuf Ali and Alhaji Lai Mohammed.
According to ACN, the appointment of the committee was an indication of its total commitment to making the merger a reality, noting that there was no going back in the party’s determination to work with the CPC and the ANPP to rescue and salvage Nigeria.
ACN congratulated the leadership of the CPC and the ANPP which had already named their merger committees, for their patriotism, and appealed to all Nigerians to support the planned merger.
According to the statement ‘This is not about the ACN, CPC or ANPP but about our country Nigeria, which is tottering on the edge of disaster due mainly to the lack of leadership and failure of governance by the ruling Peoples Democratic Party, PDP since 1999.
The merger of the three parties is like a ‘Noah’s Ark’ which all Nigerians who are tired of the endless drift of our country must enter into. This is not about winning power at the centre at all costs, as the naysayers will want Nigerians to believe. It is about putting the interest of Nigeria and Nigerians above everything else.
’’We will also like to inform Nigerians that contrary to what the doubters and spoilers are saying, the three parties are going into the merger plans unconditionally and without a set mind over posts or anything else. The only issue that has been settled is the urgent need to rescue and salvage our country. In this regard, the opposition knows it has a date with history.’’