The National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Adams Oshiomhole, has warned the Bauchi State Governor, Bala Mohammed, to avoid trouble by respecting the sanctity of the State House of Assembly.
He gave the warning following the inauguration and election of Speaker of the assembly by 11 members of the assembly loyal to the governor out of the elected 31.
Oshiomhole said it was absurd that a minority party shut out 20 members of the APC in order to perpetuate the act in the “nocturnal hours”.
The 11 lawmakers – eight of whom were members of the Peoples Democratic Party – elected Alh. Abubakar Suleiman while the APC lawmakers returned the Speaker of the Eighth Assembly, Kawuwa Damina, as their own factional speaker.
The immediate past governor, Muhammad Abubakar, led the aggrieved members to the APC National Secretariat in Abuja on Friday.
Oshiomhole said, “There is no way the PDP can produce the speaker, the deputy speaker and other principal officers. If the governor insists, then he is inviting trouble for himself. He should have said he is vacating the governorship office until the determination of his case.”
“So if we have not misused federal might or federal instrument or institution to prevent Governor Bala Mohammed from being inaugurated, it is a shame that he would rather sit and use federal institution to undermine the rights and privileges of the APC members elected duly by the people of Bauchi State certified by INEC to be inaugurated.”
Oshiomhole said the party would ensure the police did the right thing in Bauchi by providing cover for the parliament and securing lives of members.
Oshiomhole lamented that a similar scenario played out in his home state of Edo when nine members elect principal officers and shut out 15 others.
“Yours was 6am, Edo was 9.30 pm, all these are unholy hours. Those are nocturnal hours. The working hours for parliament are provided by the rules of the parliament. It is not up to anyone to change those rules only properly constituted parliament can change the rules as they are,” he added.
Meanwhile, a former national chairman of the All Progressives Congress, Chief John Odigie-Oyegun, and some chieftains of the party in Edo State have slammed the national Chairman of the ruling party, Adams Oshiomhole, for the recent crisis in the state House of Assembly.
The criticisms came as peace gradually returned to the state.
Nine of the 24-member assembly had met to elect a speaker for the assembly, a development that led to crisis in the state.
Odigie-Oyegun said, “It is a very, very unfortunate situation and it only originates from the breakdown of god-fatherism,” saying the crisis should send a strong message to those he described as “combatants” in the party.
“We saw this happening, we knew it could happen, but, I’m surprised it could happen with this kind of degree of intensity. But, like I told you, god-fatherism does not work with a thinking people who are so diverse.
“Just to remind the combined combatants that if they continue in the path they have set for themselves, they stand the danger of making the APC the opposition party in the state because the division in the party is very deep and if they don’t reconcile quickly, then I can bet them now, that they will lose the state. So, let them not destroy the party and the state because nobody will benefit from it, if that happens, everybody will lose. That’s my only message to them,” he added.
Another chieftain of the party, Charles Idahosa, did not only put the blame on the doorstep of Oshiomhole, he called for his resignation as the national chairman of the party.
Idahosa said the silence of the ex-governor in the face of the crisis orchestrated by those who claimed to be Oshiomhole group (Edo Peoples Movement) meant consent.
He alleged that some of the youths causing mayhem in the state were Oshiomhole’s boys.
In apparent endorsement of Obaseki’s moves, Oyegun, who himself is a former governor of the state, did not only throw his weight behind the inauguration of the 7th Assembly and the emergence of its leadership, he also paid tribute to Governor Obaseki for overriding the interest of those he describes as “meddlesome godfathers.”
When contacted for reaction to these allegations, the Chief Press Secretary to Adams Oshiomhole, Simon Ebegbulem, declined comment.
“I’m not responding to that man. This people [Edo Peoples Movement] responded yesterday now. You can use that one,” he said.
Convener of Edo Peoples Movement, Henry Idahagbon, had while responding, said Oshiomhole was too big to meddle with the Edo APC affairs.
“Oshiomhole is national chairman of the APC and not Edo State. As a result, he cannot condescend to their level to play ethnic politics. Oshiomhole is too big for these people and it is sad that each time Idahosa wants to seek relevance, he sang Oshiomhole’s name so his benefactor will see he is working.”