From Bolaji Ogundele, Jide Orintunsin, Abuja and Linus Oota , Lafia
Buhari, governors put off controversial NEC meeting
Court of Appeal grants stay of action
How governors revolt forced shift of meeting
Shut up, APC is not divided, Oshiomhole breaks silence as he arrives secretariat for NWC meeting
The table turned suddenly on Monday for the internal forces battling to oust All Progressives Congress (APC) National Chairman Adams Oshiomhole.
They lost the battle to foist a National Executive Council (NEC) meeting on the party. They also lost at the court.
The Court of Appeal granted a stay of execution of the March 4, 2020 order of a High Court of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) suspending Oshiomhole as the National Chairman.
Following the FCT High Court order, the secretariat of the party, which the police initially shut down was opened for the anti-Oshiomhole members of the National Working Committee (NWC) led by Victor Giadom, the deputy national secretary.
Giadom is spear heading the plot to get the chairman out.
He is backed by a minister, some of the governors and a few members of the NWC.
Before the appeal court ruling, Giadom earlier on Monday secured another interim order of the FCT High Court sitting in Maitama, allowing him to pilot the affairs of the APC as acting chairman and to preside at all NEC meetings of the party.
Justice S. U Bature after considering the motion for ex-parte and an accompanying affidavit of Mr. Mustapha Salihu’s counsel, granted an interim order allowing Victor Giadom to pilot the affairs of the party (4th defendant) as the acting chairman and to preside at all meetings of the National Executive Congress (NEC) of the party.
The court also restrained the party and its officers from preventing or in any way disturbing Giadom from functioning as the acting chairman pending the hearing and determination of the motion on notice.
Governors elected on the platform of the party, who were already divided along the pro and anti-Oshiomhole lines, met with President Muhammadu Buhari at the Aso Villa yesterday and resolved to put off the controversial NEC meeting, called by Giadom, without the appropriate authority of the party.
The governors at the meeting were Atiku Bagudu (Kebbi); Babagana Zulum (Borno); Babajide Sanwo-Olu (Lagos); Dapo Abiodun (Ogun); Godwin Obaseki (Edo); Abubakar Badaru (Jigawa); Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq (Kwara).
Others were Governors Abdullahi Sule (Nasarawa); Mohammed Sani (Niger); Simon Lalong (Plateau); Rotimi Akeredolu (Ondo); Abdullahi Ganduje (Kano); Adegboyega Oyetola (Osun); Aminu Masari (Katsina); Hope Uzodinma (Imo), and Inuwa Yahaya (Gombe).
Absent were Governors Nasir El-Rufai (Kaduna); Kayode Fayemi (Ekiti); Mai Mala Buni (Yobe); and Yayaha Bello (Kogi).
Bagudu, chairman of the APC Governors Forum told reporters after the meeting that: “Progressive Governors Forum (PGF), who are governors of the All Progressives Congress (APC) controlled-states, came this afternoon to meet with Mr President and among other issues, we discussed about party issues and showed appreciation to Mr President on how he has given access to each of us individually and collectively.
“Among the issues we discussed was the resolution the governors have taken to work together and resolve all the issues in our party and also we sought Mr President’s support to postpone the National Executive Council (NEC) meeting that was scheduled for tomorrow (today), until such a time that governors will be able to report back”, he said.
When asked if the President had agreed to the suspension of the planned NEC, the governor said “yes and he’s so happy that we all took the burden”.
Nasarawa state governor Abdullahi Sule said the crisis rocking the APC will be resolved.
Speaking when he appeared on a Television political programme, in Lagos, he said “we are having major misunderstanding within party and with the interpretation of the law.
“They are having some problems in Edo State between the governor and the national chairman of the party and the governors have done as much as they could to resolve them.
“They met over and over to no avail, it is only in Edo that we have this problem and I don’t want that to be viewed as the problem of the party as a whole, the national chairman was suspended by his word according to the document and then a division among the national exco.
“Don’t see that as a problem of the party as a whole. I don’t have any problem with that but by the grace of God, today (yesterday) we will resolve that problem, we have a meeting of APC governors, all of us , for me I have not attended a meeting of any group.
“What I’m saying is that we don’t have a division, let us meet. I’m attending the one today, all the APC governors are meeting today and we will look at each other’s faces and tell him directly ‘what is your problem’ we can’t be divided.
“After the meeting, we will go and meet our president today and say sir , you are the leader of the party, you have to come in. I’m very hopeful that the meeting will resolve the differences among the governors but whether it will resolve the Edo problem , I don’t know.
“For me I want to take one step at a time, let us resolve the issue with the governors so that we don’t have separate teams meeting and they drag some us who are new into the issue, people say it is about 2023 and I’m just one year into office.
“I don’t have anything to do with 2023, I’m more interested in how do I improve Nasarawa state” Governor said.
Also on Monday, a meeting of 25 states chairmen of the APC met with some governors to shore up support for the national chairman.
Governors Abdullahi Ganduje (Kano) and Babagana Zullum (Borno) attended the meeting.
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