The war for the seat of the National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress continues as Edo Unity League invoked an ancestral curse on a former governor of Edo State, Adams Oshiomhole and his allies.
This reaction came barely 24 hours after the Edo APC caucus endorsed Oshiomhole for the position of the National Chairman of the party and urged him to join the race ahead of the forthcoming convention of the party.
The development was disclosed to journalist in Benin on Sunday by the State Chairman of the party, Anslem Ojezua which was presided over by the governor of the state Godwin Obaseki.
￼In attendance were: the Minister of State for Health, Dr Osagie Ehanire, former governor of the state, Prof.Osarhiemien Osunbor, Deputy Governor of the state, Comrade Philip Shaibu, State, Deputy Chief whip of the Senate, Senator Francis Alimekhena, Deputy Chief Whip of the House of Representatives, Pally Iriase, Secretary to the Edo state Government, Osarodion Ogie and entire members of the House of Representatives in the state under the APC platform.
Anslem said”Today we had our state caucus meeting and at the meeting, a motion was put to urge our leader, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole to put himself forward for the position of the National chairman of the APC considering the fact that NEC had graciously approved that the zoning formula earlier put in place should be sustained.”
The National Vice Chairman of the South-South zone, Ntufam Eta had disclosed to journaists hours after the caucus meeting that Oshiomhole was unanimously endorsed for the position of the National Chairman of the party.
Eta said “The Edo State chapter, led by its Chairman, informed us that the decision was unanimously accepted by the Edo APC Caucus. During the deliberation, the delegation from Rivers State kicked against Oshiomhole’s candidacy but the voice vote of the zonal executive committee, defeated their position while that of Adams Oshiomhole prevailed and stands as the position of the zonal executive committee of the Party.
“We have done our part. It’s now left for the membership of the National convention to do theirs and we pray that they follow our lead. This is our honest prayer.”
In an unusual response on Tuesday by the Director, Action and Mobilisation the group, Mallam Abdul Osaze Uhunamure, the group paraded a coffin to warn the former governor and his allies to retrace their steps or face the unsavory event of their lives.
EUL described Oshiomhole as a political desperado who cannot be trusted with a sensitive position like the National Chairmanship. Making reference to the inauguration of the central hospital in the state, the group said that “We believe the position of the National Chairman of a party should not be inadvertent reward to those who drain the President reputation by inviting him to commission a completely non existent hospital and other phantom projects.
“Similarly, we are backing Odigie-Oyegun, because, his terrific leadership broke the jinx of hitherto impossibility of unseating an incumbent Federal Government. Such a curator of due diligence, such a transparent public administration maestro; and such embodiment of peace and diplomacy is needed at this time; taking into account how he held forth the President Buhari in the twilight of his medical upheavals and existential threat by Biafra. We can’t forget that in a hurry.”
On why Oshiomhole and his allies are after National Chairman, Edo Unity League said because”Chief Odigie-Oyegun has refused to shield suspected looters of the state and national treasury especially of Edo State extraction from the anti-corruption satellite of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission.
“He has failed to bribe or compromise political appointees to award pipeline protection contract; mining and crude exploration contracts in favor of one Mr. Adams Oshiomhole and his allies
“He failed to sway his Excellency – President Muhammadu Buhari to release funds for the recently held Local Government election in Edo State. He failed in securing a ministerial slot for their sponsor, Adams Oshiomhole.
In a similar vein, 4 state chairman pitched tent with Oyegun ahead of the May 14 National Convention. The state chairmen distance themselves from the endorsement of Oshiomhole by the zonal Vice Chairman, Hilliard Eta who they claimed ambushed them.
Metrowatch named the four state chairmen as: Rivers State Chairman, Chief Davies Ikanya, Bayelsa State APC Chairman, Deacon Joseph Fafi, Akwa Ibom State Chairman, Dr Amadu Attai and Cross River Chairman Mr. Etim John.
Their positions were made known after the four reportedly stormed out of the meeting that was held at the government house in Edo State on Monday which was allegedly presided over by Governor Godwin Obaseki
Speaking with journalists, the chairmen reportedly said “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. 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.
“First, I want us to know that 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.
“Secondly, there are very senior members in the zone that were shut out of this meeting purposely.
“Number one, the national chairman of the party who is from this zone and the national vice chairman of the party ought to seek the permission of the national chairman of the party even to convene this meeting because the constitution states that the national vice-chairman shall assist the national chairman.
“So, in this zone where we have a sitting chairman and he is not invited to a meeting, you have six ministers, you have former governors, you have very senior citizens of this zone and they were shut out of the meeting only for the national vice-chairman to ambush everybody, ignore every motion that was moved, even when somebody moved a motion that he should disqualify himself having shown bias from the beginning in this meeting, he still sat there and he is saying to the public that there was a resolution.
“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 re-contest, any other person from the zone can recontest if they want to re-contest.
“What has happened in this meeting is a farce, it 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” Rivers State APC Chairman, Chief Davies Ikanya said.
“I am a member of the National Working Committee (NWC) of this party. Every resolution of this party must come back to the NWC where I am a member. What we have done here today is the Edo State Government House position. It is not the party’s position. First, the South-South Zonal Headquarters of this party is in Port Harcourt.
“Two, 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.
“I want to put it on record that out of the six state chairmen of our party, we have the Chairmen of Cross Rivers, Akwa Ibom, Rivers and Bayelsa here, that is, four state chairmen are here.
“So, it is a decision of the Edo state government not the decision of the party and cannot stand. I have spoken with the national chairman of the party who still presides over this party up till this afternoon. It was when I got to this hall that I put a call across to him. I said, ‘National Chairman sir, are you aware of this meeting’, and he said ‘no, I am not aware’.
“So, I want to put it on record that this decision is not that of the party, it is that of the Edo state government and that is why it is being held at the Edo state government house” APC Deputy National Secretary, Hon. Victor Giadom added
“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” . Bayelsa State APC Chairman, Deacon Joseph Fafi said.
“I align myself with my colleagues. As far as the meeting today is concerned, I completely dissociate myself from it and so are my members from Cross River state. This is not our decision. It is not APC decision. It is the personal decision of the National vice chairman south-south and the Edo state governor. It is on this note that I am saying that whatever decision they reach there, if at all, is completely null and void, also bias and has no stand. It is undemocratic and it is inconsequential. I so state” Cross River State APC Chairman, Mr. Etim John said.
“We came here and we were ambushed by the Edo State Government House to take decisions that are not in line with the workings of the party.
“We give respect to the national chairman of this party, and we believe Edo people should respect him and give him the right of first refusal and that is democracy.
“We from Akwa Ibom state do not support any decision that is taken today in this meeting, any resolution that was reached is null and void because we were not allowed to vote.
“We stand by my colleagues in this unanimous decision that whatever was arrived at is out of context”, Akwa Ibom State APC Chairman, Dr. Amadu Attai said.”