APC Oshiomhole’s chairmanship ambition suffers major setback

Ahead of the APC national convention, four south-south chairmen have reject Oshiomhole for the party's national chairmanship position.

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Ex Edo Governor, Adams Oshiomhole

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The All Progressives Congress (APC) national chairmanship ambition of former Edo state governor, Adams Oshiomhole, suffered a major setback on Monday, April 23, 2018.

Four of the six state chairmen of the party from the South South geo-political zone dissociated themselves from the purported endorsement of Oshiomhole for the APC top job.

The chairmen are Davies Ikanya (Rivers), Joseph Fafi (Bayelsa) Etim John (Cross River) and Amadu Attai (Akwa-Ibom) as well as the APC deputy national secretary, Victor Giadom.

The state chairmen who were at the Edo state Government House to protest plans by the Edo state Governor, Godwin Obaseki and the zonal vice chairman of the APC, Hilliard Eta to adopt Oshiomhole as the south-south zone's candidate for the party’s national chairman.

They insisted that the APC National Chairman, John Odigie-Oyegun should be given a right of first refusal to seek re-election for the position.

The ambush

Addressing journalists, the Rivers state APC chairman alleged that they were "ambushed" with Oshiomhole’s adoption agenda at the meeting.

“We were here for a meeting only to be ambushed by the National Vice Chairman of the Party (Hilliard Eta) to adopt a preconceived candidate,” Ikanya began.

“Yesterday (Sunday), we held a meeting which he attended, only for him to come and manipulate, sort out every suggestion and he is trying to say he has come out with a resolution.

“The Zonal Executive Committee does not have the power to elect, nominate or to adopt candidates for national offices. It is the national convention that can do that. There are very senior members in the zone that were shut out of this meeting purposely.

“We want you to know that out of the states of the zone, four states are saying that this was an ambush, it was not acceptable, there was no resolution. We have said that every person is free to run in the election. We stand by the resolution of the National Executive Committee (NEC) that there is waiver.

“The national chairman can recontest if he wants to recontest, any other person from the zone can recontest if they want to recontest. What has happened in this meeting is a farce, is not binding on anybody, it is null and void.

“Four states are saying no, whereas just two states - Edo and some parts of Delta are the people that are saying that they have a resolution. This is not how democracy should be practiced. Arising from this meeting today, the majority view is that there is no consensus on any candidate,” he announced.

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‘Oshiomhole’s endorsement illegal’

Similarly, Giadom said the described Oshiomhole’s purported endorsement by the zonal executives as illegal and undemocratic.

“What we have done here today is the Edo State Government House position. It is not the party's position,” he declared.

“This zone does not have the power to sit in Government House to decide or take a decision against any candidate. This decision was not put to a vote. It was smuggled by the national vice chairman of this zone and without allowing the people who were in the meeting to have input or for us to have an election as the case may be,” he said while adding that the APC national chairman was not aware of the meeting.

‘Oshiomhole’s endorsement equals fraud’

The Bayelsa state APC chairman described Oshiomhole’s endorsement as both undemocratic and ‘a complete fraud’

“I want to also align myself with my colleagues from other states that they are not aware of what happened here.

“It is undemocratic, unexpected and a complete fraud and we dissociate ourselves from what has happened here and we believe that the election should be open to any interested candidate from the South South and the people will decide who to vote for and not the decision of Edo state,” Fafi said.

The Cross River and Akwa-Ibom chairmen also disassociated themselves and their states members of the party from the purported endorsement.

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