Romanus Ugwu, Abuja
The All Progressives Congress (APC) National Working Committee (NWC) has wielded the big stick, clamping an indefinite suspicion on the governors of Imo and Ogun states, Rochas Okorocha and Ibikunle Amosun respectively over anti-party activities.
The national leadership rose from several hours meeting at the party’s secretariat and pronounced the suspension, adding that it has recommended the expelled individuals to the National Executive Committee (NEC) of the party for final ratification.
Confirming the suspension which was equally clamped on the Minister of Niger Delta, Usani Usani Uguru and the Director General of Voice of Nigeria (VON), Osita Okechukwu, the National Publicity Secretary of APC, Mallam Lanre Isaa-Onilu, in a statement noted that the governor of Ondo state, Rotimi Akeredolu, has been queried over his glaring anti-party activities.
According to the statement, “The NWC of the APC has suspended the Governor of Ogun State, Ibikunle Amosun and the Imo State Governor, Rochas Okorocha for anti-party activities. Also suspended by the APC NWC over anti-party activities are the Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Usani Uguru Usani and the Director-General of the Voice of Nigeria (VON), Osita Okechukwu.
“This decision was reached on Friday at a meeting of the Party’s NWC, presided by the National Chairman, Adams Oshiomhole at the APC National Secretariat. The NWC has also taken a decision to recommend the expulsion of the suspended individuals to the National Executive Committee (NEC) of the party.
“The NWC would also issue a query to the governor of Ondo State, Rotimi Akeredolu over his glaring anti-party activities, which greatly affected the fortunes of our candidates in the recently-conducted Presidential and National Assembly elections in the state.
“Recall that the NWC had earlier written to the suspended governors on their anti-party activities, and several other steps were taken to ensure they desist from taking actions that are inimical to the interests of our party and candidates. Notably, these individuals have not shown any remorse and have actually stepped up their actions.
“The party reviewed the serial anti-party activities of the concerned individuals before and during the last Presidential and National Assembly elections in their respective states and resolved to enforce party discipline in line with our constitution.
“The NWC noted how the suspended members have continued to campaign openly for other parties and candidates that are unknown to our great party, even while they have constituted themselves as opposition to APC candidates in their respective states.
“Importantly, the NWC is closely monitoring the activities of our members across the country, and particularly, in the states these suspended members belong to. We wish to reiterate that any member of our party who takes any action solely or in line with the directives of the suspended members to undermine our party’s candidates in the coming governorship and House of Assembly elections would face disciplinary actions.”
However, reacting angrily, the DG VON, said that though he has not received any official suspension letter, such move was a calculated attempt to clamp down on the enemies of the party, blaming the failure of APC in Enugu on Oshiomhole for hoisting some unpopular National Assembly candidates for the APC in the zone
“One has not gotten a letter of suspension from my great party. If actually a press statement was issued, it may not be unconnected with those who want to sideline their enemies in this season of contestation. Remember that Femi Adesina, spokesman for Mr President had opened a window for gruesome struggle.
“Our Comrade Chairman should not blame me for hoisting some unpopular National Assembly candidates for the APC in our zone. For I am at loss how one contributed to the failure of his darling candidate, Juliet Ibekaku Nwagu in Egede, her home town and Udi local government, her primary local council in the five that make up the senatorial district,” he quipped.
Promises by media aides of Governors Amosun and Akeredolu to send in their reactions were however not fulfilled as at 10pm yesterday.