Bola Tinubu, the national leader of the All Progressive Congress (APC) has thrown his support behind Adams Oshiomhole, the embattled national chairman of the party.
Mr Oshiomhole, whose party has been in crisis, was suspended by a Federal High Court in Abuja after he was suspended by party officials at the ward level. He has appealed the verdict and has not resumed duties at the party’s secretariat despite another court of same jurisdiction invalidating his suspension.
The ruling party is currently factionalised with the former Edo State governor heading a faction while Victor Gaidom, the assistant national secretary, claims to be in charge going by the party hierarchy following Mr Oshiomhole’s suspension and the absence of a substantive national secretary. The party’s former national secretary is now the governor of Yobe State.
In a statement he personally signed on Sunday, Mr Tinubu said he is supporting Oshiomhole because the former Edo State governor is a tireless campaigner and mobilizer who has steered the party through difficult elections.
He said those plotting the removal of the embattled chairman were scheming for the next general election expected to come up in 2023.
“The Chairman is human; thus, he has his merits as well as his flaws. Yet his humanity cannot be grounds for his dismissal. If so, the position will forever go vacant,” Tinubu wrote.
“The Chairman has been a tireless campaigner and mobilizer for the party. He has steered the party through difficult elections. His contributions should not be undervalued now that the bulk of elections are behind us. To do so would be an act of ingratitude.
“It is no secret that the Chairman and Edo Governor Obaseki are in dispute. This is unfortunate. However, the party has moved through proper procedures within the proper organs of the party to hopefully resolve this spat. All party members know this. Such decisions are part and parcel of internal party governance. Yet, motivated by ambitions that have nothing to do with the quality of the Chairman’s performance, people shunned the agreed party reconciliation mechanism and resorted to other means to oust him. These self-help attempts are unwarranted. These attempts reveal more about the mala fides of their perpetrators than they do about the Chairman.
“The plotters launched their attack solely because they perceive the chairman as an obstacle to their 2023 ambitions. People went to court knowing full well the party constitution prohibits such action because these people had not yet exhausted all internal disciplinary procedures. We even had a national deputy secretary improperly call for a NEC meeting on the basis that he believed himself the acting national chairman. Clearly, this man would not have summoned the temerity to make such a move had he not been instigated by powerful individuals who he thought would reward or, at least, protect him for committing the wrongful act.
“Those engaged in these manoeuvres see themselves as clever or cunning. They do so because they only understand the mean craft of political intrigue. They have yet to understand the value and long-term utility of democratic governance. Thus, they embark on the strangest of quest. They would rather dismantle and weaken the institutional core of their party just to gain control of that weakened edifice in order to pilfer the party nomination, which they crave. This is more than sad,” the statement partly read.
The former Lagos governor who is of the opinion that this was not the right time to scheme for a race which is still three years away, advised that politicians should shelve their next personal ambition and support President Muhammadu Buhari to deliver good governance to Nigerians as