As the feud between the national leader of the All Progressives Congress, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu and the national chairman, Chief John Odigie-Oyegun worsens, a cabal may have begun moves to get rid of the former chieftains of the Peoples Democratic Party currently serving as members of the ruling party’s National Executive Committee.
The Point gathered that the cabal, which favoured the outright removal of the former PDP chieftains from the APC exco, has already ensured the sidelining of certain members of the ruling party’s exco.
If the APC cabal succeeds in its ongoing moves, the positions of former PDP elements like the ruling party’s Deputy National Chairman, Chief Segun Oni, may not be secure.
It was learnt that the witch-hunt launched by the cabal against the former PDP elements in the national exco followed allegations that some of the party chieftains had taken side with the embattled national leader of the party, Tinubu, in his quarrel with the national chairman, Odigie-Oyegun.
The cabal is now said to be working assiduously against Tinubu and his loyalists within the APC, who also include some of the PDP elements.
Tinubu, known as a power broker in the APC, had influenced many top appointments in the ruling party, especially in favour of those who are totally loyal to him and closely share the vision of the party with him.
“ALLEGEDLY INFURIATED BY THE ANTICS OF THESE PDP ELEMENTS IN THE APC EXCO, MEMBERS OF THE CABAL WERE SAID TO HAVE VOWED TO GET THEM EXPELLED FROM THE RULING PARTY”
The former governor of Lagos state is said to have been having a running battle with Oyegun because of some “information leakage” in the national executive to the APC national leader by a former PDP chieftain described by party sources as “Judas Iscariot”.
The former PDP chieftain is accused of always giving first hand report to Tinubu about the situation of things in the APC NEC. The current crisis in the ruling party is even said to have divided the rank of the former PDP chieftains currently serving in its national exco. While some are said to have pitched their tent with Odigie-Oyegun, others, including one serving in the top echelon of the party’s NEC, have remained loyal to Tinubu.
Allegedly infuriated by the antics of these PDP elements in the APC exco, the members of the cabal were said to have vowed to get them expelled from the ruling party.
Also, several leaders of the party, including its presidential aspirants during the last election, are no longer playing any significant role in the affairs of the APC.
Senator Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso; former vice president Atiku Abubakar; Imo State Governor, Rochas Okorocha and Leadership newspaper publisher, Sam Nda-Isaiah, were all presidential aspirants, who contested the party’s presidential ticket for the 2015 general elections. Today, they are said to have gone “underground” regarding their involvement in the affairs of the party.
There is also acrimony among some officials of the party in its exco, whose disagreement stem from loyalty to the various camps that formed the APC.
Of late, the most visible antagonist to the party’s order has been its Deputy National Publicity Secretary, Chief Timi Frank.
After the exit of the former national publicity secretary of the party, now Minister of Information, Alhaji Lai Muhammed, from the party executive to take up a cabinet appointment, Frank, as his deputy, was expected to step in as his replacement, but he has not been allowed to automatically assume the office. Only the APC national chairman and its national secretary are now said to speak for the party. Perhaps, a major threat to the future of the APC is the neglect of top politicians in the legacy parties that collapsed in the merger agreement. Some stalwarts of the defunct All Nigeria Peoples Party, Congress for Progressives Change, Action Congress of Nigeria and a faction of the All Progressives Grand Alliance have expressed worry over the manner with which the APC government failed to carry them along. Party members are said not to be happy with Buhari’s appointment of a number of PDP stalwarts when those who fought for the APC to win the 2015 elections have not been considered. The last elections saw Senator Bukola Saraki and Yakubu Dogara emerge as Senate President and Speaker of the House of Representatives, despite being excluded initially by an APC mock poll. Atiku was suspected to have connived with Saraki to defy the ruling party, giving rise to reports that he might be sanctioned by the APC over his alleged role.