National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC) Chief John Odigie-Oyegun on Monday said that the fate of the party during the 2019 elections will be decided by its performance in the South East and South South geopolitical zones in relation to votes.
Odigie-Oyegun, who expressed sadness and shock over the loss of the Anambra election by the party, noted that the APC had what it takes to win the Anambra election, but is surprising that the party lost.
Such electoral disaster he said should never befall the APC in the South-South and South-East in the next general elections, and therefore, the party has decided to put its house in order to avert a repeat of such.
Oyegun, who spoke while inaugurating a four-man strategic committee to conduct a forensic investigation on the circumstances that led to the woeful performance of the party during the recently concluded Anambra governorship elections, said the two geopolitical zones will play a crucial role in the party’s victory in the 2019 general election.
His words: “The South East and the South South will be crucial and critical to our victory in 2019. Not from the point of view of numbers of votes because we are fairly confident that having gone through our initial planning that the APC would carry the day in 2019.
“But for us, it is critical that the South East and South South zones, which have contributed immensely to the survival of this nation and so, must fully be represented in what is going to be a truly national government of the APC in 2019,” he added.
Oyegun said drawing experience from the results from the Anambra election, it is necessary for the party to start on time to plan for future election and ensure that what must have gone wrong during the Anambra elections did not repeat itself.
“Today (Monday) we are inaugurating a strategic committee and the mandate is for you, Chief Niyi Adebayo and your team to do a forensic examination of what could have gone wrong; why did we not do as well as we expected; what were the factors that contributed to our low score.
“We did much better compare to the 2015, no question about that; but in all fairness, given the work we put in and given the reactions of the public and the rest of it there was no question at all that we ought to have done a lot better. So, the question today is why. It is important that we are using Anambra as a trigger.
“The terms of reference was drafted and appropriately worded to give you the scope to look at the possibilities of God forbid a repetition of what happened in Anambra in other state in the South East.
“We want to start early; we want to strategize early; we want to plan early; we want to be confident that after we have done our field work and the reward from the field work is commensurate with the efforts that we have put in.
“I want to be partisan here, we want a situation where we will win handsomely in the South-East. For the South-South, the circumstances are slightly different. But we are going to have the same type of strategic team for the South-South.
“The issues are different, the environment is different, the circumstances is different, but it is necessary also that we building the South-South into the national power framework that we expect to emerge in 2019. So, l want to thank you gentlemen for accepting this onerous assignment,” he said.
Responding, Chairman of the Committee and former Ekiti state Governor, Otunba Niyi Adebayo, assured the party that the Committee will meet all stakeholders in the state with a view to finding out what actually led to the loss and proffer solution which will help the party in subsequent election.