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Fresh Suit: 'I Won't Return As APC Chair Even If A Court Rules So' - Oshiomhole

Former National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Comrade Adams Oshiomhole says he still maintains his earlier position on accepting the dissolution of the Party’s National Working Committee (NWC) under him.

He was reacting to the report of a fresh legal suit challenging the dissolution of the NWC by President Muhammadu Buhari. The suit was filled by a member of the dissolved NWC, Hillard Eta, an ally of Oshiomhole and former acting national chairman of the Party.

Rumours were rife that Oshiomhole, a former governor of Edo State, may be using Eta as proxy to fight his way back to Office as the ruling party National Chairman, having been out of power for long.

But Oshiomhole, in a statement obtained by Igbere TV on Monday, entitled: “My Position Has Not Changed”, said the court documents were clear enough on who the plaintiff was and shouldn’t be dragged into the legal battle.

He lamented the attributions made by the media to the effect that the plaintiff is an “ally of Oshiomhole” or an “associate of Oshiomhole”, insisting he had nothing to do with the case.

Oshiomhole maintained that he already left as national chairman of the party and wouldn’t return to office even if a court reverses the dissolution or declares same as illegal, having accepted his fate earlier.

“For the avoidance of doubt, the 21-member NWC under my leadership largely worked cohesively and harmoniously. The only exceptions were those of the three members used by forces desperate to take control of the party. They contrived a crisis and abused the judicial process to undermine the constitution and integrity of the party. The majority of 18 members worked as a team and not as allies or loyalists of any body. When the National Executive Committee (NEC) in its wisdom dissolved the NWC, I immediately announced publicly that I accepted the decision, regardless of its illegality or otherwise, as it affected my position as national chairman,” he said.

“I was the only one at the press conference where I made the announcement for personal reasons. The reason, of course, was that some of my colleagues in the dissolved NWC obviously didn’t share my position not to contest the dissolution in court. I can only accept responsibility for my own decision.

“Subsequently, I instructed my lawyers to withdraw the suits challenging my purported suspension from office by the proxies of those bent on removing me as chairman.

“It is, therefore, the height of mischief to insinuate, as it is being done in some quarters, that I would publicly accept the decision and later surreptitiously seek to contest it in court. That chapter of my political life is closed. Even if another NEC decision or a court order reverses the dissolution, with utmost humility I will decline to return as APC chairman.”

Oshiomhole said he was proud of the accomplishments of the NWC under his leadership and grateful to the “principled 18 members” who worked as a team committed to the cause of the party, adding that he bear no grudges against any one for the manner of his removal.

Instead, the former APC national chairman said he was grateful and loyal to President Muhammadu Buhari who he said encouraged him to contest the chairmanship of the party. “I am also very much appreciative of the support of President Buhari who encouraged me to assert the authority of the party without fear or favour,” he added.

“Indeed, I would not have lasted as long as I did as national chairman but for the President’s and support for me. I will continue to support his administration to succeed in serving the common good of the people of Nigeria.”

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