Reasons President Muhammadu Buhari moved against the suspended National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress, APC, emerged last night, as the National Executive Committee, NEC, wielded the big stick to check the crisis ravaging the party and avert what the President described as self-destruction.
At an emergency meeting in Abuja, the NEC dissolved the factionalized National Working Committee, NWC, and set up a caretaker/national convention committee headed by Governor of Yobe State, Mai Mala Buni, a former national secretary of the party.
The emergency virtual NEC meeting, presided over by President Buhari at the Council Chamber, Presidential Villa, also appointed Senator John Akpanudoedehe as national secretary of caretaker committee.
Party insiders told Vanguard that Buhari moved against Oshiomhole because he “narrowed the party to himself’” and one of the founders of the APC, committed many infractions, sidelined the NEC and carried out solely many actions that needed NEC’s ratification.
One of the actions that needed ratification was setting up the screening committee for the Edo State primary of the APC.
The insider said all the governors who attended the NEC meeting were not in support Oshiomhole and did not dissent to the dissolution of the NWC.
“Can you imagine? Oshiomhole narrowed the party to himself and a leader of the APC; 19 members of the NWC were for Oshiomhole and that leader. There were so many constitutional infractions. Many decisions of the party that were supposed to be ratified by the NEC were taken by Oshiomhole. We could not continue like that. The President had to save the party,” the source said.
On Tuesday, President Buhari threw his support behind the faction of the APC led by court-backed Acting National Chairman, Chief Victor Giadom and the NEC meeting he fixed for yesterday. The NWC led by Hilliard Eta, who stood in for late Senator Abiola Ajimobi, who was appointed acting national chairman following the suspension of Oshiomhole as national chairman, kicked against the NEC meeting and urged members to disregard the notice. Senator Ajimobi died yesterday.
Oshiomhole is in support of the Eta-led NWC, which enjoys the backing of 17 NWC members as opposed to Chief Giadom backed by two members
Governor Buni was sworn-in immediately by Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, SAN.
However, some aggrieved members of the dissolved NWC now headed by Eta are determined to challenge their dissolution in court, arguing that the emergency NEC meeting was illegal and had no power to do what it did.
Yesterday’s decision of the NEC, Vanguard gathered is an output of the underground raging battle for the soul of the APC ahead the 2023 general polls among leaders of various groups that formed APC, governors elected on the platform of the party, and other power brokers.