…Pencils Clement Ebiri as replacement
Barring any last minute change in plan, the National Executive Committee (NEC) of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) may hold an emergency meeting early next month to determine the fate of its current national chairman, Comrade Adams Oshiomohle.
Also in the pipeline is the plan to replace Oshiomhole with the former governor of Cross River state, Chief Clement Ebiri, who was an aspirant before the Presidency allegedly, persuaded him to step down for the former governor of Edo State, last May.
Although we gathered yesterday in Abuja that Oshiomohle’s loyalists were working hard to stop the said meeting, but when contacted on phone, the party’s National Publicity Secretary, Lanre Onilu, denied knowledge of the planned meeting adding that he was not in the possession of such information.
“There is nothing as such, if it will happen we will actually make a formal announcement. I don’t have such information”, he said.
Agitation for the removal of Oshiomhole heightened after the governorship, National Assembly and state assembly primaries where alleged imposition of candidates, impunity and other acts of injustice were labeled against the NWC led by him.
Before then, the ward, local and state congresses had generated no little hiccups even as the Oshiomhole dismissed complaints and sometimes seem to have taken sides.
Matters deteriorated when governors rose against him. For instance, one of the governors that has openly expressed displeasure is Ondo state governor, Rotimi Akeredolu, who in a statement on Wednesday described the National Chairman as “incompetent.”
Also, Voice of Nigeria (VON) Director General, Osita Okechukwu,accused Oshiomohle of nepotism on a national TV show, and also called for his resignation.
But speaking with Blueprint yesterday in Abuja, a senior member of APC, who is also a National Executive Committee (NEC) member, who pleaded anonymity, said unless the current National Chairman is removed the party might be heading to a defeat in 2019.
He confirmed that some NEC members were trying to force the NWC to convene a NEC meeting next week. “Yes, there is such plan, but Oshiomohle is also trying to march on it.
“Majority of the NEC members can call for a NEC meeting that is what our constitution says. We can force him to call for a NEC meeting. The meeting is due because after the primaries the NWC has to brief us (NEC members) on the reports of the primaries across the country. The reports have to be reviewed and we have demanded for it through the National Secretary’s office.
“Normally, after the primaries, the NWC is supposed to call for a NEC meeting so that they will present the reports of the primaries to the NEC. This is because some decisions have been taken in the name of the NWC.
There is nothing like that because the NWC is not the highest organ of the party, it is the National Executive Committee (NEC) in which the President and the Vice President are members. The NWC is just a policy making body of the party.
“So, currently the NWC- under Oshiomohle- has breached the constitution, and I can tell you categorically that there is no leader in APC across the country that is happy with Oshiomohle.
“Take for example, there is a rumour we are hearing that about 20 House of Representative members are planning to defect to the PDP because of Oshiomohle’s bad leadership. He was busy promising some of them automatic ticket without consulting the real stakeholders in their various states.
“The man has overshot himself and that is why he moved the activities of the party to his private office,” the NEC member revealed.