There are unconfirmed reports that all the chairmen of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the 36 states of the federation are plotting to remove the party’s chairman, Adams Oshiomhole.
Oshiomhole incurred the wrath of some state Governors and other members of the ruling party following the outcome of the just concluded party primaries across the country.
Punch reports that the state chairmen have been meeting in Abuja since last week to discuss about the issue.
A source however revealed that the National leader of the APC, Bola Tinubu will not let it happen.
The source said “Tinubu does not want Oshiomhole removed; so, he too is moving up and down to protect him (Oshiomhole). One of his moves is his private visit to the President recently.
“This may stop the plot of the chairmen because his visit to the President was not unconnected with the Oshiomhole issue.”
Tinubu meets Buhari
Tinubu was in the Presidential Villa twice in the past week to meet with President Buhari.
After his first visit, the APC National Leader openly declared support for Oshiomhole’s style of leadership.
Tinubu also told newsmen that the APC chairman cannot be removed because he has not violated the party’s constitution.
Governors and Senators vs Oshiomhole
According to Punch, some aggrieved Governors are also working on getting the support of Senators who lost out in the primaries to throw Oshiomhole out.
The APC chairman has been openly antagonized by some Governors, notably Rochas Okorocha of Imo, Ibikunle Amosun of Ogun, Rotimi Akeredolu of Ondo over his handling of the primaries.
Oshiomhole in his reaction, said that he will not sell his conscienceto keep his job.
The APC chairman also said that he promised to maintain rule of law in the party and also uphold the voice of the members, adding that party supremacy must be respected.
A source privy to the goings on, said “I can tell you that there is an attempt by the disgruntled governors to rake in as many members of the National Executive Committee as possible, to force a meeting by NEC and pass a vote of no confidence in Oshiomhole. But I can also tell you that we have made our moves to counter that.
“As I speak to you right now, the entire South-South and South-East’s chairmen, who are members of NEC, are resolute that the attempt (by the governors) will not see the light of the day.
“You saw the last communique they issued the other time; the one from the South-South chairmen? I was the brain behind it. We have also done the same thing with the South-East. We have those zones – excluding Imo State in the South-East – locked down in support of Oshiomhole.
“In addition to that, we have also reached out to the majority of the chairmen in the North and the South-West. Apart from two states in the South-West – that is the chairmen of Ogun and Ondo – all others in the South-West are fully with us. In the North, the zone is being coordinated for us by the chairman of the chairmen, who is the Chairman of Borno State chapter. Apart from Zamfara, we have almost all other chairmen in the North.”
Oshiomhole has Buhari’s blessing
The source also told Punch that Oshiomhole enjoys the full support of President Buhari.
Citing the case of Okorocha and Amosun, the source wondered why the two Governors, after getting Senatorial tickets, also want to impose their Governorship candidates on the party.
“They know that they don’t have the backing of the Presidency. Anyhow you look at it, Oshiomhole enjoys the support of Mr. President (Muhammadu Buhari). The reason why some of us are resolute in our support for Oshiomhole is because although he is not a perfect man, he is trying to implement the promises that he made to all APC senators with a presidential backing; and getting them implemented, he has incurred the wrath of some of these governors who are not on the same page with the senators. It is the same with the House of Representatives.
“Now imagine someone like Senator Lanre Tejuoso (Ogun-Central). This is a man who has been loyal to Mr. President. When we needed him most, he was with us to prevent the veto and override of Mr. President, to ensure that Mr. President was not impeached.
“We also needed his vote and he gave his vote to us on the issue of elections sequence that was targeted at Mr. President, to take the president to the back of elections timetable. We had him supporting us. But now, all of a sudden, the guarantee he would have needed to return to the Senate, he is now deprived of,” the source added.
APC spokesman reacts
Speaking on the alleged moves to remove Oshiomhole, the APC National Publicity Secretary, Mallam Lanre Issa-Onilu said he is not aware of any plot.
Issa-Onilu also added that the ruling party’s internal issues will not be discussed in the media.
On the plans to convene and emergency meeting, the spokesman said “I am not aware of any plan to convene a NEC. There are procedures for doing such things, and to the best of my knowledge, the process has not been initiated.”
Also, a front-line supporter of Buhari, Senator Ovie Omo-Agege said any attempt to remove Oshimohole will be resisted.
He also said “Some of us are standing by Oshiomhole because he is standing by us. Majority of us have so far succeeded (in getting tickets) but a couple of them failed.
“Oshiomhole should know that he has the backing of the APC Senate Caucus at all times.”
On his part, the Majority Leader of the Senate, Senator Ahmad Lawan dismissed the reports, saying that the APC chairman’s removal will not solve the party’s problem.
“I don’t think there is any truth in it because disagreements are normal in political parties and organisations. And leadership requires that when there are disagreements, the parties involved come round a table and discuss to find a way forward.
“There are so many issues up for discussion and I don’t believe that there is any particular effort to just get the national chairman of the party removed because of the situation today. My instinct tells me that my party – a very progressive party – will not be going for that kind of thing, just removing the chairman because that will not address the issues.”
Adams Oshiomholewas declared chairman of the ruling APC at the party's national convention which held at Eagle Square in Abuja on Saturday, June 23, 2018.