The Oasis Reporters
June 6, 2018
The old Chief just a few days back came public to announce he would not be seeking re-election as Chairman of the governing APC when this beleaguered political party holds its convention come 23 June 2018. For a truth the old Chief’s decision not to re-contest cannot in any way be said to have been informed by altruistic considerations but informed by the conflation of a number of internal contradictions within the APC.
The story of Chief Odigie Oyegun as Chairman of the APC will be told in very caustic language after he would have been gone. He will be leaving behind a trail of accusations ranging from alleged corruption and having made himself available for manipulation by whoever could pay the right price particularly the State Governors with huge resources to procure his services against their perceived opponents even within the APC.
It will be recalled that in the last charade which was called State Congresses of the APC during which elections were to have been held in all the Wards in the country, in Kaduna State for instance, the outcome had already been concluded long before the supposed election day in the comfort zone of Sir Kashim Ibrahim House where names were simply penned down and forwardef to the APC headquarters in Abuja.
Chief Oyegun has simply been indifferent to all complaints and petitions arising from the charade. The dictator of Kaduna State clearly had the old Chief in his pocket which is why in spite of several petitions by the Kaduna Restoration Group, a faction of the APC in the State, the Chief Oyegun led executive of the party never bothered to even consider.
Recall too that the old Chief single handedly frustrated any mediation efforts designed to stitch the feuding factions of the APC together.
Is it therefore any surprise that parallel congresses were held in not less than 28 States of the country? Chief Oyegun’s leadership simply aligned itself with the lists forwarded by the State governments. This singular act has the capacity of causing an implosion within the APC.
Whatever forces may have conspired to foist Chief Odigie Oyegun upon the APC as Chairman did a great disservice to the party. If the design was intended to undermine the APC from within, it has worked beautifully because the old Chief has delivered on this. His concern as Chairman of the APC did not go beyond the pecuniary benefits which were to accrue from occupying such a position. When eventually he leaves the position for some other personage, he would have left behind a party trudging on crutches. History will record him as someone who instead of striving to build a strong APC was rather concerned with personal self aggrandizement.
For a truth Chief Oyegun did not join the APC to work for the growth of the party but for other reasons which have clearly played out while he held sway as Chairman. It intrigues me into asking how this character having been a State Chief Executive once upon a time would have brought himself this low as to play this ignoble role in the hands of dictators such as we have in Kaduna State. While thinking aloud over this, a friend reminded me that money has a way of playing a fast one on people to the extent that as one enjoys swimming in its waters, it gradually drains away and before you realise what has been going on you will be on dry land. My friend added that when this happens, a period of financial draught follows and were such to have another go at it, they will go with vengeance. In a society such as ours, money when rightly deployed can move mountains to the extent that White can suddenly become Black and vice versa. This could be reason Chief Odigie Oyegun never considered that the dissenting voices within the APC across the nation could have had a case worthy of his consideration. Through such negligence, the APC has been drained of some if her finest politicians and many more are on the verge of political migration. It is quite instructive that what history has chronicled as failures or errors of judgment keep being repeated. How else can one explain how so quickly the errors which became the undoing of the once great PDP have played another quick one on the APC ?
While it is fair to place much of the blame for the unravelling of the APC under the watchful eyes of Chief Odigie Oyegun, a much larger chunk of that blame must also be shared by the President of the Republic since as many are saying is the father of the party. How could the President have sat by watching Chief Oyegun inflict such humongous damage to the party?
Couldn’t there have been a mechanism to apply the brakes on Oyegun’s evil plans?
When the President decided to abort Oyegun’s tenure elongation scheme, it clearly amounted to too little, too late as the spinal cord of the APC had been damaged already.
After the June 23 National Convention of the APC, the old Chief would have handed over a party in utter ruins. That done, the old Chief will then retire once more to enjoy his loot. Whoever succeeds Oyegun, and I pray it will be Adams Oshiomole, he will have to plan and prepare for the cleaning of the augean stable left behind. Adams will have to overstretch his great leadership skills to restore the party if it has not already gone well beyond restoration. He must be weary of the toxic and contaminating overtures of characters such as the dictator of Kaduna State. He must also acquire large listening ears unlike his predecessor. This way, he could stand a chance of restoring the dwindling fortunes of the APC.
Written by Col. Gora Dauda (rtd).
He writes from Kaduna, north west Nigeria.