APC crises: Buhari meets Oshiomhole and the state chairmen, intervenes in Edo
Written by Henry on December 6, 2019
The National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress, Adams Oshiomhole, will today (Friday) lead state chairmen of the party to meet President Muhammadu Buhari.
The visit is coming a day after governors elected on the platform of the party met behind closed doors with the President.
Thursday’s meeting was attended by Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo and the Chief of Staff to the President, Mr Abba Kyari.
The APC is currently battling with crises in Edo, Bayelsa , Anambra, Edo and Ondo states.
Buhari, had at the party’s National Executive Committee meeting last month, urged all members to unite.
The President said history would not be fair to members if the APC collapsed after his second term. He said history would be fair to the APC if the party remained strong, by not only holding the centre but also making gains.
An associate of the APC national chairman said Oshiomhole was not formally invited to the meeting on Thursday and so couldn’t have been expected at the meeting.
The Secretary of the Forum of APC State Chairmen and Enugu state chairman of the party, Dr Ben Nwoye, confirmed the scheduled meeting with the President.
“Yes, the national chairman is leading us tomorrow to the President on a courtesy visit,” he said.
Recall that some members of NEC of the party including a few state chairmen and non-National Working Committee members recently called for the resignation of the former Edo governor for alleged highhandedness in running the party.
Nwoye however said, “An overwhelming majority of the state chairmen have their unalloyed support for the leadership of Adams Oshiomhole, it is unwavering. We believe anyone talking about changing leadership at this time does not mean well for the party.
“We have just won Bayelsa and Kogi governorship elections and by-elections in Niger and Katsina states.
“For a chairman doing his work diligently to ensure that everything falls in line…. We are about to make history by ensuring quick passage of the bill. This is because he ensured there is no sharing of principal offices with the opposition.”
“To remove him they need two-thirds majority, they don’t have the number. As I speak with you he has the support of the state chairmen and non-working committee members.”
But it was gathered that Thursday’s meeting was part of efforts of the President to personally intervene in the Edo State chapter of the APC.
The Edo APC has been factionalised since after the 2019 elections with one group, Edo Peoples Movement led by Oshiomhole, and the other by the state Governor, Godwin Obaseki.
The crisis worsened last month when the rival factions suspended Oshiomhole and Obaseki.
The NWC led by Oshiomhole set up a five-member fact-finding committee on the crisis. The committee was headed by the Kano State Governor, Abdullahi Ganduje. However, there were reports that Obaseki had rejected the committee, which had yet to submit its report.
According to reports, the meeting, which started about 3.01pm, ended about 4.40pm..
The meeting came barely 24 hours after the Edo State House of Assembly declared the seats of all members loyal to Oshiomhole vacant on account of not meeting the constitutionally-required number of sitting days.
While Oshiomhole was not at the meeting, the Edo State Governor, Mr Godwin Obaseki, attended the meeting.
The Kaduna State Governor, Mr Nasir el-Rufai, also attended the meeting.
Ekiti State Governor, Dr Kayode Fayemi, was at the meeting. Fayemi, who is the Chairman of the Nigeria Governors’ Forum.
Other governors seen leaving the meeting were those of Jigawa (Abubakar Badaru); Plateau (Simon Lalong), Borno (Babagana Zulum); Nasarawa (Abdullahi Sule); Ogun (Dapo Abiodun); Osun (Adegboyega Oyetola); Gombe (Muhammad Yahaya); and Niger (Abubakar Bello).
The Deputy Governor of Kogi State, Mr David Onoja, represented Governor Yahaya Bello at the meeting.