Tuesday, May 10, 2016 12:21 am
The National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Chief John Odigie-Oyegun on Monday inaugurated a five-member fact-finding/reconciliation committee to look into immediate and remote problems affecting the party and stakeholders in Edo state.
The five-member committee is chaired by former Osun State Governor, Prince Olagunsoye Oyinlola. Other members are APC National Organising Secretary, Senator Osita Izunaso (Vice Chairman); Senator Ndoma Egba (Member); Hajiya Fatimah Mohammed (Member) and Alhaji Ahmed Abdullahi (Member).
The Edo state APC governorship primaries is scheduled for June 18, 2016, the APC National Chairman disclosed during the inauguration.
While inaugurating the Committee, the APC National Chairman said it has become necessary to arrest the unfortunately deteriorating situation in Edo chapter of APC ahead of the gubernatorial primary and the gubernatorial election.
Odigie- Oyegun added that it was unfortunate that Edo chapter of APC which has brought a lot of development to the State is engulfed in crisis few months to the crucial gubernatorial election.
“It is a matter for concern at all levels of party and government that a state we hold just a matter of months to an election and weeks to primaries should be engulfed, so to speak, in the kind of unfortunate intra-party disputes at virtually all levels, party level, government level and now the state Assembly,” said Odigie-Oyegun.
While noting that members of the Committee have been very specially chosen because of their extremely high level of integrity and demonstrated support of the vision of the party, he charged them to go to Edo state, to restore normalcy within the fold of the APC.
“It is important to emphasize the fact that for us, Edo is a critical state strategically. I hope I would not be mis-interpreted, if I say it is also a must win state. So your job in Edo is not just to restore peace and help restore normalcy in that state, but to also come out with suggestions that would restore the party in that state, to be a dependable political fighting force and ready to win the forthcoming election.
“I will also want you to go with a definite mandate and let everybody know that at the National level we assure them that there would be free and fair primaries, and there would be for all aspirants a level playing field.
“And we expect that in the run-up to the primaries, which we expect to hold on the 18th of June, that all aspirants must be given equal exposure by the party structures in Edo state.
“There is nothing wrong so to speak if influential individuals within the state, even the Governor to state a preference in terms of the aspirants. We are a party of change and we must emphasize that in everything that we do, the example that was set with our presidential primaries.
“That was one of the major event that catapulted the APC to where we are today. And we are not going to go back on the need, the necessity, for free and fair primaries, which mean that the party itself min the state must be as neutral as possible because all aspirants are their children.
“So this is the message I want you to go with and do everything that you can to arbitrate in the state Assembly, Party and may be even at the executive level.
“A lot rides with the success of your assignment. In fact, I would almost say don’t come back until you have succeeded in restoring the party and the Edo state APC to health,” said the APC National Chairman.
While responding on behalf of other members, the Chairman, Prince Oyinlola said it is necessary for peace to prevail in the Edo State chapter of APC, especially in view of the impending gubernatorial election. He assured that his committee will carry out their assignment diligently and without fear or favour.
“Whatever is the outcome will serve as the guidance to what would happen in our future engagement.
“So Your Excellency we assure you once again the trust you have in us to carry out this assignment would not be misplaced. God been our helper, we will finish on time and then deliver the outcome to you. We are indeed very grateful for finding us worthy,” the former Governor of Osun State said.