President Buhari has handed Asiwaju Bola Tinubu a tough task of reconciling aggrieved APC members. We don’t envy him.
The crack in the APC has reached an obvious height following the infighting within the ruling party.
Fights, attacks and counter-attacks between members of the APC are now an open secret.
Here are some members Asiwaju has been saddled with the responsibility of reconciling before the 2019 general elections.
Senator Musa Rabiu Kwankwaso and his governor, Abdullahi Ganduje are not the best of friends at the moment.
Ganduje who was Kwankwaso’s deputy during the latter's days as Governor of Kano state fell out with the Senator not long after his election as governor.
The governor recently -- through the Police -- 'stopped' Kwankwaso from holding a mega rally in the state capital.
“People voted for Abubakar Audu but God voted for Yahaya Bello,” Senator Dino Melaye declared when the Bello was announced winner of the Kogi state governorship poll following the death of Prince Abubakar Audu on Sunday, November 22, 2015.
Fast-forward to Friday, November 6, 2017, the Ajeku Iya crooner called Governor Bello an “olodo” on Twitter.
Senator Melaye had accused Governor Bello of sponsoring his recall from the red chamber.
The governor however denied the allegation.
Senator Melaye had accused the governor of transforming Kogi workers into internally displaced persons (IDPs) while begging his colleagues to donate relief materials to civil servants and retirees who were allegedly being owed over twelve-month salaries.
Asiwaju will also see to the reconciliation of Governor Bello and James Faleke.
Faleke had asked that Audu’s votes be transferred to him as he was Late Abubakar Audu’s running mate during the 2015 Kogi election.
Faleke headed to court but lost.
The party gave the votes to Bello who came second during the APC primaries.
Reconciling the trio could be compared to the biblical analogy of a Carmel easily passing through the eye of a needle.
Governor Nasir El-Rufai said Senator Shehu Sani is angry with him because he (EL-Rufai) failed to appoint his friends as commissioners.
“Shehu Sani’s first anger was that the list of commissioners came out and none from his list. In a state where there are about 10,000 PhDs that I have in my data base; I am not going to take a diploma holder and make him a commissioner just because he is Shehu Sani’s man. I don’t operate like that,” El-Rufai said according to Dailypost.
“He contested the APC primary and defeated the candidate that I supported (General Sani Saleh), and after the primaries.
“I don’t owe Shehu Sani anything. I asked all of them including Shehu Sani, to give me names of people that I will appoint to positions. They gave me, and I looked at them, and none of the people from Shehu’s list is good enough to be a commissioner in my cabinet.
“Because of the things he has been doing, criticizing the president, saying all sorts of things about me, the party disciplinary process was initiated against him, but he blames it on me. He thinks I engineered it. But, frankly, I don’t care about Shehu Sani.
“Shehu Sani’s history is that he is an activist, of some type and it is up to you to determine the adjective.
“I think the problem is that because Shehu Sani’s mind is that of an activist, he thinks that the way to position himself…he thinks politics is being in the media all the time. Activism is different from politics. Sometimes in politics, you don’t want your name in the media, but activists’ oxygen is the media, and he thinks that the way to remain visible and prepare him for running for governor of Kaduna State in 2019 is to criticise everything I do.
“I don’t think he is a threat to me politically or in any way. In 2018, when the whistle is blown we will see who has support on the ground in Kaduna,” El-Rufai announced.
Senator Sani who has been vocal against the actions and inactions of the federal government recently blasted governor El-Rufai and others who endorsed President Buhari’s reelection.
“Governors that supposed to be chief executives of their states leave their duty posts on a daily and weekly basis to the villa to endorse and re-endorse the President. Too much and over-endorsement. We should tell ourselves the truth,” Senator Sani said at plenary on Tuesday, January 16, 2018.
Senator Sani and some aggrieved APC members in Kaduna state formed a splinter group “APC Akida” (a Hausa word which means “Our interest”) on Thursday, June 2, 2016.
Senator Sani recently hinted on running for the post of governor of Kaduna state in 2019.
The relationship between Senator Kabiru Marafa and Governor Abdullaziz Yari of Zamfara state has not been exactly the best.
Marafa had accused Yari of failing to protect residents adding that the Zamfara state was under the control of militias.
His words: “Zamfara state is now under the control of the militia and the saddest thing is that the governor knows these people, the deputy governor and the commissioner of police know these people.
“I want to say it again and again that the governor knows the perpetrators of this crime. They move around freely with their arms.
“I said it yesterday I was home during the fuel crisis. In my own town, they are the ones that judge between people.
“The people no longer go to the local authorities like the emirs and chiefs; they don’t go to police. iI there is a problem they go to the bush and tell these people that ‘I have a problem with somebody. They settle these issues right inside the bush,” Marafa declared.
Senator Marafa also said Governor Yari is not an indigene of Zamfara state as claimed.
Governor Yari was alleged to have said that he would end Marafa’s political career.
Governor Mohammed Abubakar fell out with Yakubu Dogara when he failed to support the latter's speakership bid in 2015.
The APC had chosen Femi Gbajabiamila as its consensus candidate.
Dogara, however, contested and won against the wish of the APC.
The governor had stopped Dogara from carrying out projects in his constituency.
Tinubu also has before him a case involving himself, Senate President Bukola Saraki and the Attorney-General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami.
Like Dogara, Saraki became Senate President against the wish of the APC.
A source had told Pulse that Tinubu had chosen Benue lawmaker, Banabas Gemade to become the Senate President “but President Buhari insisted on Ahmed Lawan.”
“The APC then settled for Lawan but Saraki did all he could and became the Senate President. That was the beginning of his (Saraki) problem,” the source added.
The AGF, on behalf of the federal government, dragged Saraki to the Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT) on grounds of false asset declaration.
The AGF has also acquired court orders preventing the Senate from continuing investigation into the reinstatement of pension fugitive, Abdulrasheed Maina.
The Senate sees Malami's move as an affront on the anti-corruption crusade of the Buhari government.
Wife of the President, Aisha Buhari is also an aggrieved APC member.
Aisha, in an interview with BBC, accused a certain cabal of taking over her husband’s government.
The First Lady also said she won’t go on campaigns with her husbands if things do not change for the better.
Have things changed for the better?
Well, Aisha recently shared videos of Senators Isa Misau and Ben Murray-Bruce criticizing her husband on the floor of the Senate.
Trouble started between the duo when the minister of communication, Adebayo Shittu started nursing the ambition to become the next governor of Oyo state.
Shittu had petitioned the APC national chairman, John Odigie-Oyegun; and Tinubu, over what he described as the “unbecoming conduct” of Governor Abiola Ajimobi.
"It is an open secret that the fortunes of APC has nosedived in the state due to Governor Ajimobi’s undue arrogance, grandstanding, nepotism, caustic and unguarded utterances and creating unnecessary divisions among party leaders and members thereby balkanising the party along group lines.
“Worse still, the traditional media and the social media are awash with various commentaries of the negative impact of Governor Ajimobi’s degeneration behavior in the fortunes of our party.
“It is on the basis of these facts and some decisions of the Ajimobi’s government as it affects the generality of our people that I have had cause in the past to criticise him and insist that the overall interest of APC as a political party in power should be paramount, rather than the egoistic feelings of the governor and his co-travellers," Shittu's petition read.
Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives, Yusuf Lasun and his governor, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola are also not best of friends at the moment.
Like Shiitu, Lasun is also eyeing the governorship position of Osun state.
Transport minister, Rotimi Amaechi has vowed not to support the governorship ambition of Magnus Abe.
Amechi accused Abe of insulting him all day, everyday.
“There is no fight in the APC. I am not in any way stopping Abe from running for the governorship, but what I know is that I will not support him. Abe is daring me, an Ikwerre son. He is abusing me every day. I will ensure I use Ikwerre vote against him,” Amaechi declared.
The APC national chairman, Chief John Odigie-Oyegun and former Edo shate governor, Adams Oshiomhole also do not agree.
Asiwaju sure has a lot on his plate.
Can he put the houses in order given the short time?
A chieftain of the APC, Timi Frank, believes "it is already late" for Tinubu to unite all aggrieved blocs in the ruling party.
Frank blamed Oyegun for "failing to unite" members of the party.
He said except Tinubu is a magician, he may not be able to deliver on the job the President just handed him.
"There is no doubt that Jagaban is the right person to do this job of reconciliation," Frank declared.
"But unfortunately, the former Lagos state governor can not do magic because it's already late and nothing will come out of it. Although some people might not like this truth, but I will continue to say it.
"It is a glaring thing that all what Tinubu is expected to repair now were caused by the national chairman Chief John Oyegun's indecision, which I loudly spoke about. When I demanded for his resignation, some people felt I was being sponsored.
"If they had listened to me much earlier, when I was the only voice in the wilderness and appoint someone like this same Tinubu a year ago, may be the likes of former Vice President Atiku Abubakar wouldn't have left the ruling party.
"But thank God that today, I have been vindicated because all eyes can see clearly what Chief Oyegun's style of leadership has done to the ruling party. At this level, if care is not taken, APC might soon become history," he announced.
Tinubu’s failure to get the house together may spell doom for the APC at the 2019 polls.
Will he reconcile these groups and many other aggrieved APC members who have expressed displeasure over President Buhari’s first outing before the 2019 elections?
Events of the coming days will tell.