The National Working Committee (NWC) of the All Progressives Congress (APC) has lifted the suspension it slammed on Ondo State Governor, Chief Rotimi Akeredolu SAN; former governors of Ogun and Imo States, Senators Ibikunle Amosun and Rochas Okorocha; former Director General of Voice of Nigeria (VON), Mr. Osita Okechukwu, and former Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Pastor Uguru Usani.
The ruling party, in a statement by its National Publicity Secretary, Malam Lanre Issa Onilu, explained that the decision was in line with APC’s “deliberate policy of fairness and actions targeted at ensuring harmony within the party across the country.”
He said: “Through the suspension, our party has shown the capacity and willingness to implement its own rules and enforce discipline when there is an infraction. We have also shown that no individual is above discipline and that the party would always apply equity and justice in the day to day running of the party. We hope the concerned party members will seize this opportunity to fully reconcile themselves with their ward, local government, and state party structures, key into the party activities, and continue to make their own contributions to the growth and stability of the party.”
The APC urged them to also take steps to reconcile with groups and individuals that are important to ensuring a lasting solution to any conflict that may exist in their respective states. He noted that the disciplinary measure taken against the chieftains spoke volumes about the party’s capacity and willingness to implement its own rules and enforce discipline whenever an infraction occurs.
The APC had suspended them immediately after the general election due to what it described as anti-party activities and for allegedly sponsoring other candidates and campaigning openly for other political parties and candidates during the general election against those presented by the APC and constituting themselves as opposition to the party. Having failed to get the party to ratify his nomination of a House member, Hon. Adekunle Akinlade, as his successor, Amosun floated the Allied Peoples Movement on whose platform Akinlade and other Amosun’s loyalists contested the elections against APC candidates.
The APC’s NWC had also accused Amosun of instigating thugs to attack party chieftains at the presidential campaign rally in Abeokuta, the state capital. Like Amosun, Okorocha had squared up against the party, which failed to recognise his choice of his son-in-law as the APC governorship candidate in Imo State. He openly campaigned for Nwosu, who later defected to the Action Alliance, against the APC’s governorship candidate, Hope Uzodinma.
However, the ruling party was silent on the fate of its Deputy National Chairman, North, Senator Lawal Shuaib, and National Vice Chairman, North-west, Alhaji Inuwa Abdulkadir, who were equally suspended for the same offence.