The Leadership meeting of the All Progressives Congress, APC, will hold next week, to determine the fate of the embattled National Chairman of the party, Adams Oshiomhole.
A highly placed source revealed that high-ranking party Leaders would meet “next week”, to decide the best way to proceed, without “further depleting the party’s public image and goodwill”.
It was also gathered that President Muhammadu Buhari, who has taken charge of efforts to resolve the party’s post-primary crisis, would be convening the meeting.
Apart from Buhari, those expected at the Abuja meeting, include: Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo, Bola Tinubu, pioneer Interim National Chairman of the party, Chief Bisi Akande, the Minister of Science and Technology, Dr. Ogbonnaya Onu (as former Chairman of the defunct All Nigeria Peoples Party), and Prince Tony Momoh (former National Chairman of the Congress for Progressive Change).
The party source added: “The matter is receiving attention at the highest level. We cannot pretend, the situation involving our National Chairman is already in the public domain.
“His invitation and subsequent interrogation by the Department of State Services is an indictment if you ask me, but you cannot pronounce a man guilty without giving him the right of fair hearing.
“The Leadership meeting will take place, because as you know, we do not have a Board of Trustees in place. Mr. President as the Leader of the party, who in fact, has personally taken over the process of dealing with the post-primary crisis, is convening the meeting to deal with all these issues.”
In response to a question on whether there were charges against the party Chairman, he said: “Our party has a constitution, I refer you to Article 21, which deals with the issue of party discipline. Go and read sub-sections i, ii and xi.”
Article 21 of the APC constitution (April 2014, as amended), which deals with the discipline of party members, reads in part: “Subject to the provision of this Article and the right to fair hearing, the party shall have the power to discipline party members. The power shall be exercised on behalf of the party, by the respective Executive Committee of the party at all levels.
“Offences against the party shall include the following: (i) a breach of any provision of this constitution; (i) anti-party activities or any conduct, which is likely to embarrass or have adverse effect on the party or put it into hatred, contempt, ridicule or disrepute; (xi) in cases of alteration of delegate lists, falsification of nomination results, and or tampering with the processes of internal democracy of the party, the offender shall be liable to expulsion from the party and be prosecuted.”
Meanwhile, the APC National Publicity Secretary, Lanre Issa-Onilu, disclosed on Friday night, that Oshiomhole was back in the country.
He said: “The APC Chairman is back in the country, as scheduled. This is contrary to speculations that he was running away. He has been postponing the trip, due to the party primaries and submission of Candidates’ names to INEC.”
On the proposed Leadership meeting holding in Abuja, next week, Issa-Onilu noted: “I am not aware, but even if such meeting would hold… you see there is no crisis in APC. What people call the crisis, I call conflict. I can assure you that we are in peace in the APC. The Chairman and the NWC are standing for democracy, and you should expect resistance.”
However, the Spokesman for the Buhari Campaign Organisation, Festus Keyamo (SAN), pointed out that the crisis within the party is being exaggerated by the Media.
Keyamo maintained that the crisis was normal for a ruling party, adding that, things would become normal very soon.
He said: “Let me say clearly that what is happening now, is only normal for a ruling party.”