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APC Leadership War: Will Adams Oshiomhole Return As APC National Chairman After…?

By Francis IWUCHUKWU 


LAGOS, NIGERIA - On Tuesday, June 16, 2020, the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), announced the appointment of the former governor of Oyo State, Abiola Ajimobi, as the Acting National Chairman of the party. 


SUSPENDED APC NATIONAL CHAIRMAN, COMRADE ADAMS OSHIOMHOLE 


Prior to Abiola Ajimobi's elevation, the former governor had held sway as the Deputy National Chairman, South of the ruling APC. 


Abiola Ajimobi took over the leadership of the party in line with Section 14 subsection 3 of the APC constitution that states: “The Deputy National Chairman shall act as the National Chairman in the absence of the National Chairman from his zone.”


It would be recalled that in March 2020, Abiola Ajimobi had taken over as the Deputy National Chairman of the party when the National Working Committee (NWC) of the APC wrote a letter to the Southwest to nominate a candidate for the vacant position following the appointment of Otunba Niyi Adebayo as Minister.


Without any iota of doubt, Abiola Ajimobi's appointment got the nud of five of the six South West states of Oyo, Ondo, Osun, Ogun and Lagos with Ekiti protesting.


Abiola Ajimobi's elevation came consequent upon the decision of the Abuja division of the Court of Appeal which upheld the suspension of Adams Oshiomhole as the National Chairman of the APC. 


The Appeal Court in a unanimous judgment of a three-man panel led by Justice Eunice Onyemanam, affirmed the earlier March 4, 2020 order of the High Court of the Federal Capital Territory in Jabi, Abuja, suspending Adams Oshiomhole and barring him from continuing to parade himself as the national chairman of the party.


It would be recalled that Justice Danlami Senchi of the FCT High Court had on March 4, 2020 suspended Oshiomhole as APC’s national chairman on the grounds that the party wrongfully continued to retain him in office while he was under suspension as a member of the party.


The legal confrontation which led to the earlier suspension of Adams Oshiomhole was initiated before the FCT High Court by six applicants, including the Vice-Chairman of the party, North-East, Mustapha Salihu, and the Chairman of the party in Edo State, Anslem Ojezua.


Other applicants are members of Oshiomhole’s Ward 10 of Etsako West Local Government Area of Edo State, Alhaji Sani Gomna, Oshawo Steven, Fani Wabulari, and Princewill Ejogharado.


In November 2019, the ward executives of the party had executed the suspension of Adams Oshiomhole as the National Chairman of the party. 


Adams Oshiomhole was fired over his alleged involvement in anti-party activities, a decision  which the FCT High Court anchored the order suspending  Oshiomhole on November 2, 2019.


However, in an apparent compliance with the order of the court, security agencies had taken over the national secretariat of the party in Abuja blocking Oshiomhole from accessing his office.


However, Adams Oshiomhole through his legal team led by Chief Wole Olanipekun (SAN), appealed against the court’s interlocutory order.


Reacting to the affirmation of Adams Oshiomhole's suspension, a Lagos-based lawyer, Timothy Adewale, argued that he would advise the sacked Oshiomhole not to approach the Supreme Court for the purposes of challenging the decision of the Court of Appeal. 


Timothy Adewale said, instead, Adams Oshiomhole should head back to the High Court to do the appropriate things.


Meanwhile, as of the time of the publication of this article, the NWC of the ruling part has today (Wednesday) affirmed the appointment of Abiola Ajimobi as the Acting National Chairman of the party.  


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