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March 5, 20205min1480

 

The South West caucus of the All Progressives Congress, APC, has rejected former Governor of Ekiti State, Segun Oni to act as the National Chairman of the party.
This followed an announcement of Senator Abiola Ajimobi as the Deputy National Chairman, South, making him the most senior member of APC from the entire South.
Ajimobi is the former Governor of Oyo State. He ran an unsuccessful election into the Upper Legislative Chambers, the Nigerian Senate in 2019.
Until Wednesday, Oni was tipped to act in place of Oshiomhole who was suspended following a court decision.
Oni was the highest ranking member of the party from the entire South and should ordinarily take over according to the constitution of the party, which provides the next senior member of the party takes over at the exit of any superior from the zone.
An NWC member of the party equally confirmed the development to Daily Mail although with a caveat.
It followed that intense horse trading and struggle for the soul of the party quickly unfolded with the announcement of some members of the National Working Committee.

As news of Oshiomhole’s suspension filtered into the National Headquarters of the party, the mainstream members of the NWC, quickly approved the nomination of Waziri Bulama as the party’s acting national secretary

Mr. Victor Giadom, a former commissioner in Rivers State, had acted in that capacity and earlier briefed newsmen on developments about the national chairman.

According to a statement released by the party’s National Publicity Secretary, Mallam Lanre Issa-Onilu late evening of Wednesday, the NWC also approved the appointment of Senator Abiola Ajimobi as Deputy National Chairman (South) and Mr. Paul Chukwuma as National Auditor.

“The decision was reached on January 14, 2020,  during the meeting of the NWC at the party’s national secretariat,” he said.

He pointed out that, “Following the resignation of Mai Mala Buni as the party’s National Secretary in May 2019 prior to his election as the Governor of Yobe State, the party subsequently gave notice for a replacement from the zone.

But Giadom after speaking of the stance of the party on the Court decision saying, the party would abide by the court order suspending the National Chairman, was less than an hour later replaced by Bulama.

The timing of the announcement left some senior party members curious, with one NWC member telling Daily Mail, “it’s horse trading, every one is playing his card as he wishes.

“The timing is curious because if the approval for new NWC was granted since January, why was it not announced?

“At the moment, it is clear Ajimobi would likely act because that’s what the constitution of the party says. Is he by our constitution allowed to act? The answer is yes.

On the news that the South West ditched Oni, he said, “Oni has been having running battle with suspended the Chairman. Even from his home state of Ekiti, he was having issue to an extent they alleged he was suspended too.

“I think these confusions are based on how the party is being run. There’s confusion everywhere. Some people want to be the untouchable.

“If this continues then the party is done. We won’t make in-road in 2023,” he said.

He added that, “Someone from the South West pushed for that announcement to be made so that Ajimobi can take over. The members from that zone don’t like Oni and they feel it was the right time to axe him.”

According to him, “Oni did not enjoy the support of his governor. It’s even a battle for both of them in Ekiti State. They are political enemies.”

There was no official announcement on who takes over the affairs of the party pending the determination of the suit suspending Oshiomhole as at the time of filing this reports.

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