Governors meet Tuesday in Abuja S/south chairmen back Oshiomhole
Onyebuchi Ezigbo in Abuja
Imo State Governor, Rochas Okorocha is mobilizing All Progressives Congress’ governors against the National Chairman of the Party, Adams Oshiomhole over his refusal to submit to the Independent National Electoral Commission, the name of Okorocha’s anointed candidate for the state governorship race, Uche Nwosu as the party’s candidate for the state.
Sources said the governor has persuaded his colleagues to attend a meeting in Abuja on Tuesday to enable aggrieved governors the opportunity to share among themselves the recently concluded primaries election and come up with a united response to the leadership of the party.
Okorocha, who is also the Chairman of the Progressive Governors Forum (PGF), plans to mobilize the governors against Oshiomhole.
Some governors including Ibikunle Amosun of Ogun State, Abdulaziz Yari of Zamfara State are equally aggrieved by the primaries and had not hidden their disenchantment.
According to a source who spoke on the condition of anonymity, Okorocha plans to persuade his colleagues to pass a vote of no confidence on Oshiomhole as chairman of the party.
A reliable party source who spoke to THISDAY at the weekend about the proposed meeting, said the governors might pressurize the leadership of the party to convey a meeting of the National Executive Committee (NEC) of the party to remove Oshiomhole.
The party source said the aggrieved governors believed they could use the PGF platform to put pressure on the party’s leadership to convene a NEC meeting.
“The APC governors are meeting on Tuesday to look into ways of resolving the primary election crises rocking the party. The aggrieved ones are pushing to galvanize others for a no confidence vote against Oshiomhole.
Barring any last minute change of plan, the governors will demand for an early NEC meeting to trash out nagging issues of growing discontent against the national chairman,” he said.
However, when contacted on the possibility of an early NEC meeting to resolve dispute in the party, the National Publicity Secretary of APC, Lanre Isa-Onilu said there was no such plan.
Onilu who spoke to THISDAY on the telephone yesterday also dismissed reports of wide spread revolt against the national chairman, saying that the grievances of those who lost out during primaries were being blown out of proportion.
“Is it not the party that will announce a NEC or have we fixed any one? I am not aware of any such meeting. There are no crises, people just expect there will be crisis but there are none to warrant such fears for now” he said.
Meanwhile, the embattled national chairman has received the backing of the South-south state chairmen who have passed a vote of confidence on him.
Meanwhile, Okorocha has urged Oshiomhole, to forward to INEC, Uche Nwosu’s name, as the authentic governorship candidate of the party in the state in the forthcoming general election.
The governor who addressed journalists at the Government House, in Owerri, on Saturday, said that the only way to uphold the integrity and honesty for which he (Oshiomhole) was known for in resolving crisis bothering the party is to do the right thing, leaving behind sentiments and recognising Nwosu as the winner of the APC governorship primary election in the state.
The governor has also expressed shock that the party was contemplating undemocratic ways in determining the governorship candidate of the party in the state despite that a candidate has been duly elected.
The governor insisted that Oshiomhole and members of the National Working Committee (NWC) of the party owed it as an obligation to defend the integrity of the party, which, he noted, distinguished it from other political parties.
He observed that Oshiomhole was elected as the National Chairman of the party as a result of his track record of honesty and integrity, which he adduced were and are still his highest selling points.
He said: “We elected Oshiomhole because we felt that he is a man of integrity and we are only asking him to uphold that integrity for which we have priced him.
“He must uphold that image which he has cut for himself as Oshiomhole prior to his being elected as the National Chairman, anything short of that will reduce his value completely in this country, he should do the right thing and be simple.
“I think people are trying to change the narratives, some people are trying to upturn the truth they want to cover the truth by leaving the main to discuss frivolities.
“The truth remains that a certain Ahmed Gulak with a sinister mission came here and disappeared with result sheet by 4:00am on the day of the proposed election.
“The NWC of our party disbanded that Committee, despite the fact that eight members of the Committee, including the Secretary, stayed back and conducted the election and declared Uche Nwosu winner.
“Despite the fact that Uche Nwosu won the election, the National Working Committee disbanded that Committee and called for fresh election.”