• ACN, CPC to register new party in June
• Nation’s restructuring may top group’s agenda
A NEW political party that may emerge from the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) and the Congress for Progressive Change (CPC) merger may have Gen. Muhammadu Buhari as its presidential flag-bearer in 2015.
The new party may be formally registered in June to challenge the ruling Peoples’ Democratic Party (PDP) in the 2015 general elections.
At the formal inauguration of the CPC’s 18-man merger committee to negotiate with the ACN and other political parties in Abuja Wednesday, the national leader of the CPC, Buhari, declared his readiness to contest the presidential election in 2015 if the leadership and members of the new party decide to pick him for the race.
His new position contradicts his earlier stand that he would no longer be involved in active politics. But the CPC leader has an explanation for his new position.
Buhari disclosed that he had to reconsider his earlier position in view of numerous appeals to him to be actively involved in politics and contest the 2015 presidential election.
Buhari, who informed the committee of the great task ahead, urged them to go into the negotiation with the mind of getting the best deal for Nigerians, adding that their task must not be seen as a personal one but a national project.
He told them that the negotiation should not be seen as a battle between the two parties, stressing that the parlous condition of the nation would be enough for the negotiators to ensure that the opposition was made strong to save suffering Nigerians.
The former military Head of State, who noted that the unity of the opposition parties in the country was no longer an option but had become a national imperative also, said that the previous meetings of representatives of the two parties had already produced a road map for the negotiators to study.
He added that there was already in existence an unexecuted understanding between the CPC and ACN for the creation of a new political party, with a brand new logo and a new flag and other paraphernalia already put in place for endorsement.
Buhari noted that the new party would root for a proper federation as the basis of the union and governance of the country, as well as support the restructuring of the country.
According to him, the current 36 states’ structure of the country is simply not working and must therefore be rationalised to give way to a structure of real democratic culture and rule of law with the recognition and acceptance that the cultural and religious differences in the country are blessings and a source of strength and should not be seen as a cause of disunity.
His words: “This proposed merger that will bring a desired unity of the opposition parties we all know is no longer an option, but a national imperative, considering the state of the country; everybody is coming round to accept the necessity for it. The sentiment today is for a full merger between the CPC and ACN not an alliance or an electoral understanding. What Nigerians want is merger and that is what we are going to negotiate and bring back to them. I believe that within six weeks of the commencement of your job, the CPC and ACN should be in to sign a declaration of intent to fuse the two parties into one.
“After signing the declaration, it should not take more than another six weeks for the parties to pursue the matter within their own constitutional context to ensure that the issue is legitimatised through the proper procedure and process of its own organ. And from there it is not impossible that the new party will be presented to the people of Nigeria by the middle of this year. And when it is, the new party should root for proper federation as the basis of the union and governance of the country, and should therefore actively support the restructuring of the country. This is because the existing 36 states’ structure is simply not working and it must therefore be rationalized.”