The return of Oshiomhole
By Femi Oluwasanmi
After several court injunctions and counter injunctions, the pendulum of leadership in the All Progressive Congress (APC) seems to have swung back to the Adams Oshiomhole based on the judgement of the Court of Appeal on 16 March, 2020, and the intervention of President Mohammadu Buhari in the crisis that has made the APC a laughing stock in some quarters.
Before the Court of Appeal granted a stay of execution that returned Oshiomhole as the national chairman of the party on Monday, Justice Danlami Senchi of the FCT High Court had on March 4, issued an interlocutory injunction for Oshiomhole’s suspension on the grounds that the party wrongfully continued to retain him as its National Chairman while he was under suspension as a member of the party in his ward branch of the party in Edo State and ordered him to stop parading himself as the National Chairman of the party.
Infact, Senchi ordered that Oshiomhole should not be granted access to the national secretariat of the party in the Wuse area of Abuja.
This suspension intensified the already build up calls for the removal of Mr. Oshiomhole and open a floodgates for the anti-Oshiomhole camp to win more souls to their side. Infact, the situation aggravated the level of suspicion in the party to the extent that a National Executive Council meeting called by the Deputy National Secretary, Victor Giadom was tagged a ploy to complete the work of the anti-Oshiomhole forces.
Specifically, the National leader of the party, Asiwaju Bole Ahmed Tinubu decribed it as part of the gimmicks designed by those that are infected by the 2023 presidential ambition coronavirus to remove Oshiomhole in other to have their way comes 2023.
Meanwhile, days before the president Buhari’s intervention, four Ministers including Rotimi Amechi and some political leaders from the South-south zone have publicly passed a vote of confidence in the Deputy National Secretary, Mr. Giadom, as the best person to replace Adams Oshiomhole as the Chairman of the party.
Though, the Deputy National Secretary himself maintained that he called for the NEC meeting in order to prevent the party from total collapse and find solutions to the issues surrounding the vacuum created by the Oshiomhole’s suspension and not because of any other interest.
However, these seems to have been laid to rest with the return of Oshiomhole to his position and the indefinite postponement of the NEC meeting after president Buhari intervention, but will it put an end to the crisis in the party?
Prior to the suspension of the chairman, Oshiomhole, there have been protest and counter protest by members of the party on why Oshiomhole must go, some of the protesters alleged that his style of leadership has caused the party mishap in States like Zamafara, Rivers, Bayelsa among others.
In fact, the last protest held in Abuja was reported to have turned out violent as Pro and Anti Oshiomhole supporters collided in front of the party’s National Secretariat in Abuja. An action that was out of control till the security agencies came in to restore peace.
Some of the anti-Oshiomole protesters claimed that it was the leadership style of the Chairman that made President Buhari lost the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Abuja, to the opposition party during the 2019 general election, and responsible for most anti-party activities carried out by some members of the party in Ogun State, Imo State and some States where covert anti-party strategy was applied.
This seems to be justified with the Oshiomhole’s comment a day after his resumption when he said “I have been forced to agree that I am not the best chairman in the world and I will never be. But nobody can fault my sincerity of purpose. My style can only be my style but I have recognised that I must reconcile my style to the style of others so that we will meet in the middle of the way,”
Leadership in human organization is very important. It determines the next level of progress or problem of an organization. In fact, the results of poor leadership style in a political organization is worse than the one in the normal organization, because it affects the progress of the country especially, when it has to do with the ruling party. Take for instance, the level of distraction the party crisis has caused the president and the country in the recent time.
This was also mentioned in Tinubu’s comment on the leadership crisis in the party when he called on all parties involve in the crisis to lay down their grievances at the feets of the internal conflict resolution mechanism instead of rushing to court to settle disputes.
Now that the Appeal Court and President Mohammedu have saved Mr Oshiomhole from going to political exile, the chairman should try and right the wrong by settling the dispute between him and his godson, Governor Godwin Obaseki and others in his home State, Edo, because the battle from home is so strong to the extent that if not properly manage can finish a political giant.
Femi Oluwasanmi, a Public Affairs Analyst, writes from Ibafo, Ogun State.