APC in make-or-mar caucus, NEC meetings •Tinubu, Amaechi, governors flex muscles

Posted by News Express | 16 March 2020 | 999 times

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•APC National Leader, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu

Barring last-minute overrule by President Muhammadu Buhari, the much anticipated National Executive Committee meeting of the ruling All Progressives Congress is expected to hold Tuesday in Abuja.

The gathering of the top chieftains of the ruling party will be preceded by Monday meeting of another organ of the party, the national caucus where the power blocs are expected to advance reasons why the embattled national chairman of the party, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole must be allowed to complete his tenure or be asked to step aside in deference to the judgment of the Justice Danlami Senchi of the Federal High Court, Abuja which asked him to vacate the exalted office.

APC proxy war:

To lead the anti-Oshiomhole forces to the national caucus meeting is the Kebbi State governor and chairman of the Progressives Governors Forum, Atiku Bagudu. But for pockets of dissension, majority of the governors are pushing for the removal of the former Edo State governor, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole and the adoption of the resolution of the APC South-South Stakeholders which on Thursday night adopted the acting national secretary of the party, Victor Giadom as a replacement. Both Giadom and Oshiomhole are from the same geopolitical zone.

In league with the serving governors is the former Rivers State governor and Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi.

The two-term chairman of the Nigerian Governors Forum who over the weekend has been engaged in pleading with the governors to adopt Giadom as the anointed choice of the South-South zone is smarting for a pound of flesh from Oshiomhole whom he alleged worked with Senator Magnus Abe faction and a former Lagos State governor and national leader of the party to ensure that Rivers State APC was ineligible to field candidates in last year general elections.

An adoption of Giadom as acting national chairman by the national caucus would guarantee mileage for Amaechi at the party national secretariat since Giadom incidentally from Rivers State is perceived as Amaechi’s political son.

Queuing behind Amaechi and Governor Bagudu are two serving governors seeking a fresh mandate in governorship elections to hold this year: Governors Rotimi Akeredolu and Godwin Obaseki of Ondo and Edo States, respectively.

While the former ticket is threatened because of Comrade Oshiomhole’s affinity with Bola Tinubu, Obaseki has since declared war against Comrade Oshiomhole who incidentally was the immediate past governor of Edo State.

A national leader of the party, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu has not given up in what is perceived as his final battle to save Oshiomhole’s job. He will be leading certain sympathetic governors to the meeting of the caucus whose decisions would be final and merely to be ratified on Tuesday by NEC.

But his south-west home front is fractured as the duo of Ondo State governor, Rotimi Akeredolu, the Ekiti State governor, Dr Kayode Fayemi and the immediate past governor of Ogun State, Senator Ibikunle Amosun, all members of the national caucus have joined forces with the Atiku Bagudu team.

Issues for decisions

A party source said in confidence that one of the issues before Monday’s caucus meeting is the court pronouncement ousting Oshiomhole. He noted that even as the matter is sub judice, those advancing Oshiomhole’s cause would ask that he be allowed to continue in office since he has the window of appeal at the appellate court.

The announcement by the National Working Committee, proclaiming the trio of Isiaka Ajimobi, Waziri Bulama and Paul Chukwuma, as new deputy national chairman, South, national secretary and national auditor, respectively have raised dust in the party, culminating in the factionalisation of that organ of the party.

Party faithful were not bemused that the list of the new officers was released on the day Comrade Oshiomhole was removed by court pronouncements.

The former Oyo State governor was positioned by a power bloc as a replacement for the former Ekiti State governor and incumbent Minister of Trade and Industry, Niyi Adebayo.

Waziri Bulama is being positioned as national secretary to assume the office vacated by the former occupant and sitting governor of Yobe State, Mai Mala Buni who has insisted that the position should be filled by another nominee from his state.

By the provision of Article 14.2 of the APC Constitution 2010 (as amended) the Deputy National Chairman, South should assume the exalted office of chairman of the party in an acting capacity.

Article 14.2( i, ii, iii) stipulates the functions of the Deputy National Chairman, North/South.

It reads in part: ”Assist the national chairman in the discharge of his duties; perform such functions as may be assigned to him from time to time by the National Working Committee; shall act as the national chairman in the absence of the national chairman from his zone.”

The national caucus would also decide if the new national officers fulfilled the provisions of the party constitution for the emergence of national or zonal officers.

The Ekiti State governor and chairman of the Nigerian Governors Forum, Dr Kayode Fayemi and his Yobe State counterpart, Governor Buni, have argued that the emergence of the new national officers did not fulfil provisions of the APC constitution. The Ekiti State governor anointed candidate is Gbenga Aluko as against Bola Tinubu’s choice of Isiaka Ajimobi.

By virtue of Article 20(a) of the APC 2014 Constitution (as amended), national officers must emerge through national convention or zonal congress.

The section reads: “All party posts prescribed or implied by this constitution shall be filled by democratically conducted elections at the respective national convention or congress subject, where possible, to consensus, provided that where a candidate has emerged by consensus for an elective position, a vote of yes or no shall be called, to ensure that it was not an imposition which could breed discontent and crisis.”

The contentious issues would be decided by the national caucus in tonight make or mar meeting.

The caucus pronouncement on the validity of the process that threw up Senator Ajimobi and two others would consequently, determine the legality of actions of the deputy national secretary, Victor Giadom in assuming the office of acting national secretary and de facto leader at the party national secretariat since the court ousted Comrade Oshiomhole.  (Nigerian Tribune)



Source: News Express

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