Ahead of the 2023 general polls, plots by some state governors to remove the National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress, APC, Mr. Adams Oshiomhole from office are thickening.
Some governors and stakeholders had expressed fears that the APC might fail given the way Oshiomhole, in their estimation, was running the party more so as President Muhammadu Buhari will not be on the ballot.
Those opposed to Oshiomhole cited APC’s fate in Rivers and Zamfara states where avoidable squabbles made the party not to have valid governorship and other candidates in the 2019 polls, a development that gave the opposition Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, victories on a platter.
They also cited the party’s loss of Bauchi, Adamawa at the polls and inability to hold National Executive Council, NEC, meeting and inability to maintain peace in his native Edo State among others to remove Oshiomhole.
However, Oshiomhole has the support of some big wigs, who in a counter-argument cited the party’s victories in Osun, Ekiti, Bayelsa, retention of Kogi and of course the prime slot-the presidency, as reasons to retain him to continue a good job.
The rank of those in this camp, sources told Vanguard, has swollen with more governors buying into the argument.
At the last count, Babjide Sanwo Olu (Lagos), Umaru Zulum (Borno), Dapo Abiodun (Ogun), Yahaya Bello (Kogi), Abdullahi Ganduje (Kano), Muhammad Inuwa Yahaya (Gombe), Aminu Bello Masari (Katsina), Abdul Rahman Abdul Razaq (Kwara), Adegboyega Oyetola (Osun), and Simon Lalong (Plateau) governors said to support the APC chairman.
Three governors – Abubakar Sani Bello (Niger), Abdulahi Sule Nasarawa, and Mai Mala Buni (Yobe) are said to be neutral.
Those considered opposed to Oshiomhole are Godwin Obaseki (Edo), Mallam el-Rufai (Kaduna), Kayode Fayemi (Ekiti), Rotimi Akeredolu (Ondo), Badaru Abubakar (Jigawa), and Abubakar Atiku Bagudu (Kebbi).
Two of the 10 governors, one from the South-West and another from the North-East practically stopped their colleagues from asking Oshiomhole to resign recently, sources told Vanguard, weekend.
That was after the Director-General of the Progressive Governors Forum, Salihu Lukman took Oshiomhole to the cleaners, criticising him for running a one-man show.
He challenged the party chairman to convene a National Executive Committee, NEC, meeting which had not been held for a long while to resolve all challenges in the party or resign.
Flowing from this, the governors before a recent meeting with President Buhari at Aso Villa wanted to ask Oshiomhole to resign. A meeting to firm up this position was held at one of the state governments’ lodges in Abuja. The two pro-Oshiomhole governors were not invited but they got wind of it and stormed the meeting. When the PGF members present wanted to pass a resolution that they had agreed to ask Oshiomhole to resign, the two governors asked them to state where and when the decision was taken. They warned against actions that could further polarise the APC.
Based on this, the question of raising a reconciliation committee was answered.
NWC not under threat -Official
Speaking on the issue, a member of the National Working Committee, NWC, of the party said Oshiomhole was not under any serious threat even though the party hierarchy had raised a reconciliation committee headed by Senate President Ahmad Lawan to reconcile aggrieved members.
“For now, the NWC is not doing anything. We are on break. So, if anything, it will be on an individual basis. What I know is that since we announced the setting up of the Ahmad Lawan Reconciliation Committee, almost everyone is waiting for the committee to take off first. Ours is to give them terms of reference which basically is to reconcile all aggrieved tendencies and also make recommendations. So, hopefully, Nigerians should expect new things from the APC in the New Year.
“We have read reports in the media suggesting that some governors are articulating their positions. Truth is that they are leaders of the party in their own rights. Some of us became NWC members based on the recommendations of our governors. So, I do not think that the leadership of the party is under threat,” he said.