Adibe Emenyonu in Benin City
The national leadership of the All Progressives Congress (APC) has waded into the seeming crisis rocking the party in Edo State.
In recent time, the build up to the governorship primaries in the state APC had generated a lot of fire, especially the alleged friction between Governor Adams Oshiomhole and his deputy, Dr. Pius Odubu, over the issue of succession.
But speaking during a courtesy visit on Oshiomhole
at Government House, Benin City, leader of the APC Fact-finding and Reconciliation Committee, and former Governor of Osun State, Prince Olagunaoye, said reports from the state chapter of the party in the last few weeks were not edifying and that the party at the national level was alarmed at her steady erosion of the stability and cohesion earlier seen in the state.
Oyinlola who was accompanied by Senator Osita Izunaso, Senator Ndoma Egba and three others, said the visit became necessary because in the last weeks, the APC in Edo had appeared to be undoing what had taken so much energy, commitment and sacrifice to put in place in the last eight years.
He said: “We are here because our party believes darkness must not fall on this state once again. When you came, you gave every man a reason to believe once again in participatory democracy as the best form of government.”
However in his response, Oshiomhole expressed reservation on why the national leadership of the party has not asked him about the supposed problems in the party in the state.
According to him, Abuja APC must settle itself before seeking to settle crisis in Edo State, stressing that what they referred to as crisis was being fomented by those who left PDP for APC because of the language associated with them which has always been associated with the opposition.
Oshiomhole who was speaking for the first since the crisis in Edo APC erupted, however, stated that the crisis in Edo APC was blown out of proportion by those he termed “were rehabilitated by the party.”
He suggested that informal approach to issues work better than formalised approach, adding that the party might be shedding crocodile tears about the supposed problems in the state.
Wondering why the official language should be ‘reconcile everybody’ when the most uncouth and vulgar language have been used to describe his person, Oshiomhole stressed that “those beating the drum of war in the APC were defectors from the PDP who want to discredit the APC in Edo.
According to him, “The National Secretariat should check carefully because they always end up with statement that unless the comrade want to return the state to the PDP. This state cannot return to the PDP.
“We can distinguished between fifth columnist and genuine APC members. Those fomenting trouble in APC now could not deliver their wards. I deliver my unit, ward, local government and senatorial district.
“I hope that you will be able to talk to everybody. Assure Abuja that there is no cause for alarm. I will finish stronger than I started.
“Be assured of my commitment to the party, be assured of my commitment to democratic values and I will fight this election as if I were a candidate regardless of who wins.”