National leader of the All Progressives Congress, APC, Bola Tinubu, has dismissed the call for the resignation of the national chairman of the party, Adams Oshiohmole, saying party supremacy must be respected.
Crisis and defections had recently hit the party, following disputed primaries in many states, leading to either disqualification or substitution of candidates’ names.
But Mr Tinubu made his position known when he fielded questions from State House correspondents after a closed door meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari at the State House Abuja on Wednesday.
According to the APC national leader, Mr Oshiohmole has so far not violated APC constitution or engaged in any anti-party activity that will warrant his resignation or removal from office.
He said: “We all have to respect the party supremacy. You were all here when we had the Congress, we elected the new executives, we had the convention, the NEC was formed and we surrendered to avoid conflict, to avoid domination, to avoid abuses of power, we surrendered our rights, all rights to the National Working Committee headed by Adams Oshiomohole.
“That the National Working Committee should set up electoral bodies to supervise various state congresses and elections. ‘We signed off for it’.
“So, if it is not in our individual favour, so be it. We gave three options, consensus, where there is no consensus because if you are more than two or three and you cannot agree to one candidate, you go to the next level.
“The next level is the stakeholders’ delegates (system) and you have to be supervised by the National Working Committee of the party, national election committee of the party.
“That shows party supremacy or the freest option, the less cumbersome is to open direct primary, line up and count the number, 1,2,3. If you win, you win and if you fail, go home.’’
Mr Tinubu further explained that an appeal committee was set up by the party to look into grievances arising from the conduct of the party’s primaries.
He said the committee, which served as internal mechanism for conflict resolution, had performed its duties diligently
“It was there (appeal committee), you cannot turn round against that, and you cannot turn against all of that.
“No, Party is supreme, party must be respected, abuses will not do it and anger will not do it. It is party politics, somebody will win and somebody will lose, too bad,’’ he added.
It would be recalled that the national chairman of the APC, Adams Oshiohmole, had on October 21, in a statement by his press secretary, Simon Ebegbulem, alleged that conservatives within the party are ganging up to pass a vote of no-confidence on him.
He said in the statement that his sin was his refusal to allow continued impunity and circumvention of due process being perpetuated in some states.
The APC chairman added that he was not surprised by the gang up, as he never had the illusion that the process of reforming the party was going to be an easy one.