ABUJA: The national chairman of the All Progressives Congress APC, Chief John Odigie-Oyegun will not react to Sunday night’s media attack launched against him by a national leader of the party, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, until he (chairman) confers with President Muhammadu Buhari, Vanguard has learnt.
Asiwaju Bola Tinubu and All Progressive Congress APC in Ondo state, Chief Rotimi Akeredolu
Vanguard checks revealed that the chairman who is Benin ahead of Wednesday’s gubernatorial election in Edo state was still studying the statement and has prepared a brief to be presented to the president in the days to come
A member of the National Working Committee NWC of the party who did not want his name in print for fear of possible “political victimization”, however exonerated the chairman of any wrongdoing.
He said the most paramount thing in the mind of the chairman now is how to win the Edo election for his party, “because it would have a lot of political implications for him if he loses his state to another party”.
“The truth of the matter is that the chairman did not collect a dime from anyone. He did not also tamper with the (delegate) list. The issues Tinubu raised are serious issues which occurred but without the blessing of the chairman. The only way out is to launch an investigation.
The only mistake the chairman made was to have forwarded Akeredolu’s name to INEC, not that we cannot still substitute it anyway, but some of us wanted the name of a national officer of the party to be submitted to INEC in the interim while we sort ourselves out before the one month window for withdrawal and replacement lapse”, he said.
According to him, Tinubu’s statement was “unnecessary and a display of political amateurism”, saying the former Lagos state governor would have done well by writing to the president as well as Chief Odigie-Oyegun.
I’ve been vindicated -Timi Frank
Acting National Publicity Secretary of the party, Comrade Timi Frank has also restated his earlier demand that the national chairman resigns his position.
Speaking with journalists in Abuja, Frank said recent happenings in the party as well as the face-off between Tinubu and Chief Oyegun have vindicated his persistent call on the chairman to throw in the towel.
He however stated that if no action is taken, he would after 14 days mobilize party members to protest against the chairman in Abuja, adding that he is already mobilizing some members of the National Executive Committee NEC of the party to convene an emergency NEC meeting.
“I was one of the first persons in this party who took the bull by the horns to foresee what is happening today in our party and I came out early on to say there were issues or crisis in this party. As at that time, I was alone. Nobody was seeing where I was coming from. This crisis started when the issue of the leadership of the National Assembly came up and I foresaw it at that time that because of the decision and position that my party took at that time against their own party members like the senate president and the speaker, there could be further issues.
“ I came up to shout but then again, nobody listened to me. Then, it was Saraki. Again it boiled down to my humble self when my immediate boss as at that time, Alhaji Lai Mohammed left to become the Minister of Information. Automatically as the Deputy National Publicity Secretary of the party and in line with the party’s constitution, I was meant to take over as the party’s Acting Publicity Secretary.”
But again, they fought against my person for their own selfish interest because they know that I am one person that will not allow them to do some certain things that the leadership is doing and so there was a conspiracy against my person. They appropriated my job and said it is only Oyegun and the secretary that can speak for the party.
“Today, I have been vindicated. We all saw what happened in the aftermath of the Ondo primary elections…a founding father of the party, a national leader of our party has concurred with my earlier call that Oyegun should resign as national chairman. That should let you know that I foresaw what they did not see. Yes he has tried by taking the party to where he thinks he has taken it to and I congratulate him for that but again, you cannot give what you do not have.”