- Says he has been vindicated on crisis in the party
By Onyebuchi Ezigbo in Abuja
The Deputy National Publicity Secretary of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Timi Frank, has described the position of the National Chairman of the party, Chief John Odigie Oyegun, on the trial of the Senate President, Senator Bukola Saraki, as a personal opinion and not that of the party.
Frank who was reacting to a comment made by Oyegun in a recent interview that the party’s position is that Saraki’s trial at the Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT) must continue, said there was never a meeting of the party where such a decision was taken to abandon the senate president to his fate.
In a statement issued yesterday, Frank said Oyegun’s assertions had again vindicated his position on the crisis rocking the party, which might finally put to rest the doubt that all is not well within the APC.
“That the chairman of the ruling party will grant an interview on his personal opinion and assert it to be the decision of the party, can at best be described as unfortunate and a carefully mapped out plan to rubbish the current trial of the senate president.
“It is on record that there hasn’t been any NEC , NWC , BoT or caucus meeting of the party were such decision was taking to abandon the senate president to his fate. This move undoubtedly proves once more, that the Chairman is acting on an already prepared script to incarcerate and make the Senate President pay for his disobedience for not adhering to the party’s decision in contesting for the seat of the senate presidency,” he said.
The deputy spokesman also said Oyegun’s apparent biased position on the prosecution of Saraki has lent support to the insinuations that the trial could be politically motivated.
“The chairman’s position on the current travails of the senate president in the CCT, is a clear indication that the APC under Oyegun has spoken the minds of all those, that were in doubt that the persecution of the senate president is and may be politically-motivated.
“Instead of allowing the court to take its course in finding the senate president guilty, having utilised his fundamental rights as enshrined in our constitution of the legality of his trial at the tribunal, one would have wondered the hurry in Oyegun’s assertions.
“Having said therefore, wouldn’t it be most inappropriate for the Chairman of the ruling party to allow for the trial to commence and for the court to conclude on its findings before hurriedly confirming the position of the party or the president in justifying the current travails of the senate president as his sole cross to bear.
“This supposedly hurried speech is another confirmation that an already prepared script is in the offing by those who will stop at nothing in seeing that the senate president is used as the scapegoat of the anti-corruption war of this administration. This may very well be in the offing since the senate president won the seat into the upper legislative chamber, which was seen as a move against the party ab initio.
“The chairman must be reminded of the role played by Senator Saraki in the emergence of the ruling party and if Oyegun in all honesty believes that Senator Saraki should be the scapegoat for the ruling party, owing to his confirmation of bias in the ongoing trial of the senate president, then indeed the chairman has to be reminded that history has its way of repeating itself and reminding those who take it for granted when it beckons.
On his Oyegun’s assertion that he (Frank) is unable to discharge his functions as the party spokesman because of various interests, the estranged deputy spokesman said such confession only goes to further emphasis “my earlier claims that indeed the party is divided within itself.
“That the seat of the party spokesman is zoned to the North-central zone, because of the vacuum created by Lai Mohammed, is laughable as the party constitution itself is clear in the event of a vacuum created by the exit of a substantive officer.
“The lack of respect to the party’s constitution as well as the total disregard of the rule of law in the APC is the sole monster lurking to cause disharmony and disaffection amongst party faithful. The various complaints from several state chapters and the turning of deaf ears by the party Chairman is an indication that the chairman is rather busy with being the spokesman of the Party instead of focusing of purposeful leadership in steering the ship of our great party,” he said.