By Mumini AbdulKareem
There appears to be no end in sight yet to the political drama going on between the leadership of the state chapter of the All Progressives Party (APC) and various party stakeholders over the submission of nominees’ lists for the appointment of Commissioners and Special Advisers.
The APC rejected the list of nominees initially sent by the party caucuses across the local governments accusing most of them of recycling those earlier dropped by Governor Abdulfatah Ahmed.
The leadership of the party thereafter instructed that fresh faces particularly from areas that are yet to get appointments be prioritise in the new lists.
But majority of the local governments reportedly defied the party’s directive, National Pilot gathered last night, following their return of the rejected list citing issues of zoning and “political permutations” among other exigencies as reasons for their decisions.
It was learnt that in Oke-Ero, Irepodun and Oyun, and Asa the list were rejected by the party because those that served in the recently dissolved cabinet were returned.
Impeccable sources who spoke on the issue in confidence with our reporter because they were not authorised to make official comment, said the decision was a collective decision which will go a long way to maintain the cordial and existing relationship on how appointments are decided.
According to one of the sources from Irepodun, the party caucus stuck to the former list because the tenure of present administration is not more than a year and it will not be “politically wise” to change appointees now.
“We have forwarded the names of those we earlier selected for Commissioners, Special Assistants and Advisers. The reason is that those who were dissolved have been there for close to eight years and we agreed to allow them finish their term. Changing them now will alter our local arrangement which may distort the zoning bargain we have on ground.
In Asa, a source said although the local government was yet to submit its list before the party’s directive, “we however maintained the former list”.
The same reason reportedly played out in Oke-Ero, Oyun, Moro and Asa.
Checks last night by National Pilot on the situation in Ilorin West revealed that the leadership of the party rejected the nominees list submitted.
This is the second time in less than one week the council’s list was being rejected. A top source who confided in this medium said the leadership of the party has ordered stakeholders to do the “needful”.
Several calls to the Chairman of the APC in the state, Hon Ishola Balogun-Fulani and the party’s Secretary, Chief Bode Adekanye to get their reactions to the development were not successful as their phone rang without response.
But a top APC source who spoke on the issue said although the party had directed there should be no more recycling, there might be some exception in one or two instances which may necessitate some councils having additional Commissioners or Special Advisers.
The source said the party still holds the ace in terms of those to consider for appointment and when, adding that the goal is to identify and select capable hands that can push the ideas of the present administration to fruition in less than a year before the next general elections.
“Yes, the party has said that there should be no recycling, but we may not have a completely new cabinet because no matter what, we still need experience hands to stabilise and consolidate the achievements of the government.
“The party still has the discretion of who to select to make up the best team in the cabinet in order to realise the ideals of the party in the remaining months.
“So some local governments might have additional Commissioners and SAs and this is understandable,” the source added.
Another top member of the party in Ilorin West said that the no recycling directive being bandied around might turn out “political gimmick” adding that the leadership of the party will handle the situation as a win-win development.
Meanwhile, following the rejection of the earlier list of nominees, there had been some adjustments in Ilorin South, Ekiti, Baruten and Patigi, it was learnt last night.
In Ilorin East, the list was still being expected before the paper went to bed but the Commissioner slot has been zoned to Iponrin.
In Ifelodun, Kaiama, Isin and Offa, another round of caucus meetings have reportedly been scheduled for this week to aggregate and harmonise the lists of nominees for final submission.
In Kaiama, the meeting was said to have degenerated to what a source described as “rowdy situation” following the rejection of the Emir’s candidate by many caucus members.
It was learnt that majority of the local governments especially those yet to conclude its nominees list are expected to round up this week before the party takes a final decision.
The state chapter of the party had directed all the local governments to submit three names each to include; a youth, a male and a female for appointment in the next round of commissioners in the state.
Additionally, three additional names were requested for consideration for appointment as Special Advisers/Assistants.
Following the party’s directive, some local governments have engaged in the process of selecting preferred nominees leading to disquiet among stakeholders of the party across the state.
Some nominees as at last night for commissioners
Hon. Oba Jibril (Okaka)
Hajia Bilikis Oniyangi (Oke Ogun)
Hon Muyideen Alaya (BF II)
Hon Isiaka Magaji
Alhaji Wahab Lawan
Alhaji Habeeb Saadu Korope
Hajia Funmilayo Oniwa
Barrister Abdullahi Alikinla
Alhaji Kareem Jimoh.
Otunba Taiwo Joseph
Mrs Christiana Apaokagi