The Director-General of the Progressive Governors Forum, Salihu Lukman, has blamed the National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress, Adams Oshiomhole, for the diminishing fortunes of the party.
Lukman had, in an August 6 letter titled, “APC: Appeal for Reconciliation,” and addressed to Oshiomhole, queried why superior organs of the party had not been meeting.
In the letter, he had written, “As a loyal party member, I have difficulty reconciling the absence of meetings of superior organs, given all the challenges the party is going through, warranting the suspension of three serving governors (two of them now senators) and two members of the NWC.
“My distant observation is that there is hardly any difference between your (Oshiomhole’s) approach to managing the party and the way Chief John Odigie-Oyegun had managed it during his tenure. Instead, things have really got worse and painfully, it would appear that you are in denial of this reality.”
In a chat with one of our correspondents on Thursday, Lukman confirmed writing the letter but expressed surprise it was leaked to the press.
“It is true I wrote the letter but it is a private letter. Somebody in the leadership must have leaked it,” he said.
Lukman referred to an earlier letter he wrote to call the attention of the national chairman to the growing problems in the party.
He said, “Kindly recall that sometime in June this year (2019), I sent what I called a private memo on the issues of reported disciplinary actions against Governor Rotimi Akeredolu of Ondo State by the National Working Committee.
“Of course, the memo noted that before the 2019 elections, the NWC had similarly suspended former governors Rochas Okorocha and lbikunle Amosun of Imo and Ogun states, respectively. Between June and now, Senator Lawal Shuaibu, the APC Deputy National Chairman (North) and Alhaji Inuwa Abdulkadir, the APC Vice-National Chairman (North-West) have also been similarly suspended.
“It will appear that the leadership problems facing the party are getting deeper and in the circumstances the business of building the party will be sacrificed.
“We had challenges that deprived our party the opportunity to contest 2019 election in Rivers, stripped our party of electoral victory in Zamfara, engendered highest levels of leadership animosities in Imo, Ogun, Adamawa, Bauchi, Kano, Ondo, Oyo, etc. Today, with Kogi and Edo governorship elections approaching, similar leadership animosities are defining political life of the party in those states.”
Lukman said he had reviewed all the decisions and actions taken by Oshiomhole since he emerged as the national chairman of the party and he had difficulty reconciling them with the situation on the ground.
“It is a painful reality that we have found ourselves in a situation of near-stalemate in many states under your leadership. Embarrassingly, our leaders, including your very self, appear to be stubbornly inconsiderate of other options of resolving these challenges.
“If the electoral loss of Oyo, Imo, Zamfara, Adamawa and Bauchi are not a wake-up call to the dangers that lie ahead, what could have been? Is it that our leaders are indifferent to the possible return of the Peoples Democratic Party?”
Lukman said Oshiomhole had not justified why Chief John Odigie-Oyegun had to be asked to vacate the leadership of the party in the ways he had managed the party’s affairs between June 2018 and now?
He added, “Some pointers may be helpful in this respect. Many of us who are members of the party could not understand why it took more than two years after winning the 2015 presidential election for Chief Oyegun to convene the meeting of organs of the party, notably, the National Executive Committee and the National Caucus.
“Today, more than four months after winning the 2019 presidential election and almost one year after the last NEC meeting on August 30, 2018 no sign of any meeting in sight. The only organ that is meeting is the NWC.
Bauchi govt, ex-lawmaker berate Oshiomhole, Abubakar
Meanwhile, the Governor of Bauchi State, Bala Mohammed, has blamed his predecessor, Mohammed Abubakar, and Oshiomhole for the lingering crisis in the state’s House of Assembly.
The spokesman for the governor, Dr Ladan Salihu, said, “Our interest is Bauchi State and they (Oshiomhole and Abubukar) should allow Bauchi to mo forward. The President cannot come and take over the state House of Assembly; it is against the constitution. What they want is for the President to use his power to take over the Assembly forcefully and give it to them.”