- As Appeal Court affirms Oshiomole’s suspension
By Egena Sunday Ode and Osaigbovo Iguobaro, Benin and By Vivian Okejeme, Abuja
The embattled Edo State Governor, Godwin Obaseki, has formally announced his resignation from the All Progressives Congress (APC) after days of speculations on whether he would do so.
Resigning along with him was the Deputy Governor of Edo State, Mr Philip Shaibu who said he has resigned his membership from the APC with immediate effect.
Obaseki made his resignation known on Tuesday morning in Abuja shortly after emerging from a private meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari at the Presidential Villa.
He disclosed that he would pursue his second term ambition on another political party platform that he would soon make public.
Although he did not reveal his next destination, it is an open secret that the governor has been holding consultations with top politicians in Edo as well as some PDP governors in the South South to get their consent and backing before announcing the platform to contest the fast approaching Edo governorship election.
Recall that the APC had last week disqualified Gov. Obaseki from participating in the state Governorship Primary Election billed for June 22 on allegations of anti-party and inconsistencies in the certificates he presented.
Adducing reasons for leaving the ruling APC, Obaseki said he was doing so because the National Chairman of the party, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole, “is scared of educated people.”
Speaking to reporters at the presidential villa, he said: “I’m just here today to inform you that I have now decided formally to resign my membership of the All Progressive Congres. And having done that, I will now announce in the next few days my specific line of action and what platform I will be contesting the gubernatorial election on.
Blaming his resignation on the rift with Oshiomhole. the governor blasted the APC boss for not practicing what he preached as he questioned the character of the party boss when asked whether he would provide a level playing field for parties in Edo state as demanded by Oshiomhole.
Obaseki stated: “He, Adams Oshiomhole, has he? As governor Wike said, he should practise what he preaches, he has never done so. He has not provided a level playing ground even in the selection process, the disqualification process. What is the basis for disqualifying someone like Chris Ogiemwonyi?
“You are afraid of people who are educated because you didn’t go to school. You are afraid of people who have something to offer because all he knows how to offer is brigandage, crisis.
“So, for us, Nigeria has to move forward beyond some of the characters who are currently overseeing our political polity and they are scared. They are scared that when people of substance, when people who are proven, when people who have succeeded in other aspects of life come into politics, they will be history.”
On whether there are inconsistencies in his credentials as alleged by the screening committee, Obaseki said:
“Someone who hasn’t gone to school, who doesn’t have certificate himself, will not know and understand what inconsistencies in certificates are, that’s the starting point.
“What is the inconsistency? There’s no inconsistency in my certificates. The issue was in 2016, when I contested for gubernatorial election, I could not find the originals of my certificates because I hadn’t required them for more than two decades.
He further said: “So I deposed to an affidavit that I couldn’t find the originals. Subsequently, I found all the original copies of all my certificates and they are with me. So I don’t understand what’s inconsistent about that.
“Maybe the inconsistency in the Youths Corps certificate where he said my surname was missing an ‘i’ at the end, but if you look at that it was like a cursive, it was written in a cursive manner. So if that’s inconsistency for him, then it’s really sad that people of that quality are leading the Nigeria’s ruling party.
“For him it was just to look for an excuse to take whatever decision he wants to take and it’s really sad that the party structure today gives him that sort of authority without checks, that is dangerous for any system or any institution.
“When you give authority and responsibility to people who don’t have character, people who do not have finesse, a sense of justice, then that institution is imperiled.”
The deputy governor’s resignation was contained in a letter dated June 15, 2020 and addressed to Ward 11 Chairman of Etsako Local Government Area of the State, barely four hours after the Governor of the State dumped the party.
Meanwhile, the Abuja Division of the Appeal Court, Tuesday, affirmed the suspension of the National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress(APC) Comrade Adams Oshiomole by his ward.
Justice Danlami Senchi of a Federal Capital Territory High Court in Jabi, had ordered the suspension of the National Chairman of the All Progressive Congress (APC), Adams Oshiomhole, pending the determination of a substantive suit.
The order follows an application of interlocutory injunction asking the court to suspend Oshiomhole, having been suspended as a member of the APC by the party in Edo State.
The lower court held that the APC and other respondents wrongfully kept Oshiomhole as the national chairman of the party.
Furthermore, the court made an injunctive order that Oshiomole should stop parading himself as the chairman of the APC.
The judge urged the APC to desist from acknowledging him as the chairman of the party, and ordered the APC not to grant Oshiomhole access to the party secretariat.
Not satisfied with the judgement delivered by Justice Senchi, Oshiomole filed an appeal to seek redress.
However, in its judgement Tuesday, Justice Mohammed Lamido and two other Justices on the panel unanimously held that Oshiomole’s appeal challenging his suspension “is unmeritorious and hereby I dismiss same”.