By Omeiza Ajayi
ABUJA – Ahead of the June 23 national convention of the All Progressives Congress APCf, no fewer than 60 aspirants have picked nomination forms for the various offices in the National Working Committee NWC of the party.
The disclosure was made Tuesday when the Secretary of the Convention committee, Sen. Benjamin Uwajumogu, formally handed over to his successor, Sen. Victor Ndoma-Egba.
Uwajumogu revealed that no fewer than 60 aspirants have bought nomination forms, warning that the committee will stick to the timetable released earlier.
“Recall that during my resignation last weekend, I had hinged it on personal reasons especially as it coincided with the date of the Convention. I am happy to inform you and to receive the good news about the appointment of a fine gentleman and the former leader of the senate who doubles as chairman of the refurbished NDDC, Sen. Ndoma Egba.
“He is here to officially take over from me as the secretary of the National Convention Committee and let me assure you that the 2018 National Convention will be one of the best to be organized by the APC,” he said.
Uwajumogu also gave update on the progress of the Convention, disclosing: “As at today, more than 60 aspirants have bought forms for the vacant positions yet the sale of forms is still ongoing. However, we are keeping to the timetable released earlier.
“Everything is still in order and my leaving the position will not affect the process. I know very well that with the experiences Senator Egba has, he will bring more vibes to this convention scheduled for June 23. I welcome and wish you the best.”
He said he was not disappointed that the national leadership of the party appointed a South-south party member to take over from him instead of South East person he requested during his resignation.
“I was not disappointed because Senator Egba is from the Eastern Region and I believe that he is most qualified and most positioned to succeed me as secretary of the convention. He has the competence to take the Convention to a successful conclusion.
On his part, Sen. Egba said: “Let me start by thanking senator Uwajumogu for setting a very strong framework and very clear footpaths to a very successful 2018 convention. You have done the bulk of the work, mine is just to continue and conclude the good work you have started.
“I share your feelings that the 2018 convention will be a very successful one and this is in spite of your departure for personal reasons which we understand and it will not impact negatively on the arrangements you have made because they are already on ground and they are entrenched, mine is to make sure that we move forward.
“Please remain a phone call away because we will be calling you every now and then to share your insights and vision,” he said.
On his readiness to work under pressure, he said: “I don’t know what kind of pressure that will be more than having more than 108 peers. I managed 108 senators in the 7th senate as the majority leader and in the 6th senate, I was the deputy majority leader. I am used to operating under pressure and I can cope with any kind of pressure.
Asked how he intends yo combine the NDDC job with the new assignment, he said: “Hopefully by the 23rd of this month, this assignment should be over. It is a very short assignment; intense but short.”
Senator Egba also addresses the issue of imposition of candidates, quipping: “I have a list from the party and that is the one I am going to work with. How the list was compiled, I wouldn’t know but as long as it is the authentic list, that is what I will be using.”