By Onyebuchi EzigboÂ in Abuja
The National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Comrade Adams Oshiomhole has said that the party would crush the splinter group, known as Reformed All Progressives Congress (rAPC) using superior negotiating power.
But the leadership of the splinter group has said that it could muster enough votes in the National Assembly to impeach anyone if there was need to do so.
Addressing a group of people, who claimed to be state chairmen of the defunct Congress for Progressive Change (CPC) that came to disassociate themselves from the rebellious rAPC, Oshiomhole, in his acceptance speech, acknowledged that the party had challenges, but promised they would be addressed.
He said that those behind the rAPC did not seem to have shared values as others in the party hence their decision to quit.
He assured the group that the leadership of the ruling party would continue to engage those with genuine grievances with a view to resolving them.Â
“For me, there is no cause for alarm; nobody should panic over one Baba Galadima, whose group, I believe, cannot define us in the next election in 2019. Nigerians are wiser, they know that corruption is fighting back, they also know that President Buhari’s resolve to fight corruption must elicit a counter force and that force must find attraction in some people.
“But like we have rightly said, we should not be distracted and we encourage the president not to be distracted. He must remain focused and sustain the fight and I believe the rebellion will be crushed using the superior power of argument, persuading our people not to forget in a hurry where we are coming from,” he said.
Oshiomhole described Buba Galadima as “a very hungry bird dancing at the centre of the road and with a disgruntled drummer not far away in the bush drumming for him”.
The APC national chairman expressed optimism that the party would overcome the challenges and still win the election in 2019.
However, the national chairman of the rAPC, Buba Galadima, who made the claim yesterday on national television, said that contrary to Oshiomholeâ€™s statement that those behind the rAPC were inconsequential, it was the ruling party members that lacked integrity and honesty.
“On that side, there is no man of integrity and honesty as Buba Galadima. Those of us that had sacrificed our sweat and blood cannot sit idly and watch these values destroyed, this is the beginning of what is called crisis in the party.
â€œWe believe that all the values and visions of APC have been thrown to the dustbin. Nigerians from all walks of life have shown solidarity with us and for those who said that they are not losing sleep, why are they going cap in hand to the National Assembly.
“I want to say that today as I sit here, if I give a directive to our members in the National Assembly to impeach for constitutional infractions, it would be carried out because we have that majority,” he stressed.
The leader of CPC delegation, Umar Shuaibu said contrary to insinuations from the opposition that the outcome of APC’s National Convention would lead to the disintegration of the APC, “it is to their dismay that we have not only come out successful, but have produced a National Chairman of the caliber of Comrade Adams Oshiomole”.
He declared: “We wish to disassociate ourselves from the rAPC and their opposition to the President Muhammadu Buhari.”