It appears that the governor of Imo State, Rochas Okorocha, and his Ogun counterpart, Ibikunle Amosun, who were suspended by the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) for anti-party activities are adopting similar strategies to overturn the verdict of the party’s National Working committee (NWC). They both believe that the key to escaping the hammer is President Muhammadu Buhari – so they are ingratiating themselves with him.
How the strategy is playing out: Amosun has already paid a visit to President Buhari at the villa. He is not publicly speaking on the matter though, telling State House Correspondents after the meeting that the time to speak has not yet come. Okorocha is however speaking a lot. The Imo governor’s original statement blasted Oshiomhole and accused the chairman of playing the politics of 2023. Yesterday he spoke again about the matter, and this time his strategy to woo Buhari was very clear.
“Adams Oshiomhole has done so many strange things with the party and it would be wrong for anybody to think that President Buhari, known for his penchant for decency, honesty, and forthrightness would be on the same page with the national chairman,” the governor said in a statement issued by his Chief Press Secretary, Sam Onwuemeodo.
He also said:
- Buhari’s victory on Saturday shows that he is “real and can be trusted.”
- Buhari is truly fighting corruption unlike Oshiomhole who “sold the tickets of the party to the highest bidders.”
- “We have yet to see any Nigerian living that would have defeated President Buhari in that election. He has earned the confidence and trust of most Nigerians, and in states where he lost, you could see traces of wanton manipulation and mutilation of election figures like in the case of Imo. In other words, the President has nothing to do with Oshiomhole’s disdain for the right actions and the chairman’s penchant for lawlessness and total disregard for the party’s constitution,” he said.
Bottom Line: Without Pres. Buhari’s intervention, there is no chance that the suspension of Amosun and Okorocha will be upturned. So in a sense, getting the president on their side is the only strategy available to the men. They still have time. The National Executive Committee (NEC) of the party is yet to meet to deliberate on their suspension and proposed expulsion. If Buhari comes on board before that meeting, then the governors will get a reprieve. If not, it’s all over for them in the ruling party.