The former National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Adams Oshiomhole has distanced himself from the legal action taken by the erstwhile National Vice Chairman (South-South), Hilliard Eta, challenging the dissolution of the immediate past National Working Committee (NWC) by the National Executive Council (NEC).
APC had in June this year dissolved the Oshiomhole led-NWC, following leadership crisis and appointed the present National Caretaker Committee headed by Governor of Yobe State, Mai-Mala Buni.
Though Eta and some of the sacked NWC members had accepted the decision of the NEC but he filed a suit on November 26, 2020 at an Abuja High Court challenging the dissolution of the Oshiomhole-led NWC of the APC which he was part of, and demanded the court to restrain the Caretaker Committee from running the party.
Reacting to the suit, the former Edo State Governor refuted some attributions been made to the effect that the plaintiff is an “ally of Oshiomhole” or an “associate of Oshiomhole.”
Oshiomhole in a statement said the court documents are clear on who is the plaintiff, adding that for the avoidance of doubt, the 21-member NWC under his leadership largely worked cohesively and harmoniously and the only exceptions were those of the three members used by forces desperate to take control of the party.
He said: “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.
“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.
“I am proud of the accomplishments of the NWC under my leadership and I am grateful to the principled 18 members who worked as a team committed to the cause of the party.
“Above all, I bear no grudges against any one for the manner of my removal.
Instead, I am grateful and loyal to President Muhammadu Buhari who encouraged me 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.
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”.