On Monday, 8th Feb… APC To Meet In Makeni

Embroiled in internal political wrangling since the advent of the National Reformation Movement (NRM) after the 2018 national elections that demanded the party leadership to step aside and make way for constitutional reforms, the leadership of the All People’s Congress (APC) in its continued bid to chart a durable way forward will meet on Monday 8th February, 2021 in Makeni.

Sources have it that at the behest of the Chairman and Leader, former President Koroma, the party’s second highest decision making body, the National Advisory Committee (NAC) will meet to address several issues besetting the party.

Among these would be the latest development – a lawsuit filed by one Alfred Peter Conteh resident in the USA challenging the legitimacy of the party’s current national executive body headed by Chairman and Leader, Ernest Bai Koroma.

A similar lawsuit filed in January 2020 by NRM is yet to be decided on by the High Court accusing the APC leadership of abrogating powers to itself when it sought to sit an emergency National Delegates’ Conference in Port Loko to adopt the party’s revised December 1995 constitution.

The issue of the continued stay in office of the Ernest Koroma executive was explained by the APC National Secretary General as such:

The party’s national and other executives have a lifespan of three years as mandated by the party Constitution. The current executives came into office in October 2017 after the Makeni National Delegates’ Conference with their mandate to end in October 2020.

However, in March 2020, the government declared a health State Of Emergency (SOE) and placed a ban on all political party activities to enable the implementation of the COVID-19 preventive rules and regulations.

Therefore, Ambassador Osman Foday Yansaneh explained that if there was no court injunction and the COVID-19 interruption, the party would have endorsed its new constitution in January 2020 and in February and March go on with its conventions at Constituencies, Districts, Regional up to National Delegates’ Conference in October 2020.

The party, has said, wrote a letter to the Political Parties Registration Commission (PPRC) which in its reply emphasized on the ban on all political party activities including meetings, rallying and gathering till the SOE is lifted.

Ambassador Yansaneh stated that date for lower level elections were given out when the party was dragged to court by NRM and charged for contempt. He said an MOU was signed with NRM for an out of court settlement which they all agreed in Makeni as the best option in Makeni which was to be effected on 13th  December, 2020.

One of the signatories on the part of NRM for the withdrawal of the case never showed up and as it is, the injunction still stands.

Another issue that Monday’s NAC meeting would discuss is the recent uproar raised by some senior party comrades after the party’s leader in parliament and several national executive officers endorsed the candidature of Dr Samura Kamara in Kambia as the party’s 2023 presidential candidate.

Vehemently, Hon. Bundu who said he was removed from his position as Port Loko District Chairman in 2015 for a similar transgression wrote a letter to the party leadership calling for those officials that endorsed Dr Samura Kamara to be set aside. His call was supported by Dr. Richard Conteh who said the action was discriminatory and would not create a level playing field for other comrades that would want to vie for the position.

The meeting would also seek to amidst all these internal political challenges how to put the party’s house in order ahead of the planned lower level executive elections whose fate now is uncertain as the High Court said at the last adjourned date it will on 22nd February, 2021 give ruling on whether it would throw out NRM’s case against the party leadership or rule that the matter proceed and the substantive issue raised by NRM be argued upon.