By Nwangwu Uba
The coast is clear for the Opposition People’s Democratic Party, PDP to reclaim Osun state from the ruling All progressive Congress, APC. this is because the Federal Appeal Court of Appeal, sitting in Abuja, has set aside the Judgment of an Abuja High Court which had disqualified Senator Ademola Adeleke, the party governorship Candidate, from contesting the last September, 2018, election in the state, on the allegation of not having a valid West African School Certificate Examination, WAEC, Certificate.
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He was said to have encouraged his legal team to not to lose sight of the fact that they have a good case at the Supreme Court in spite of the fact that that Oyebola and his party , were the one that had dragged him and the PDP to the apex Court.
The ruling APC P in the state may have sent a signal to the PDP that it would not sit by and watch its , Candidate , take over the state on a mere pronouncement of the Appeal Court It is not surprising why the party is pursuing the case at the Supreme Court with all seriousness to quash the ruling of the Tribunal which declared Adeleke, the PDP, Candidate the winner of the governor election in the state.
A close source at the Osun government House at Osogbo, told The Value News, that no sooner the presiding Judge gave his Judgment o the Case than Gboyega Oyetola, the state governor and his aides including his legal team were said to have gone back to the drawing the board to perfect their legal documents to avoid creating legal hoopholes for the Opposition PDP to cash on at the Supreme Court . The party, according to sources are still holding on to the belief that Adeleke, the PDP Candidate has no valid Certificate and therefore, not qualified to contest the governorship election, let alone rule Osun state.
It was learnt that Ahmed Bola Tinubu, a former governor of Lagos state and the Party National leader and Adams Oshiomhole, a former governor of Edo state, who incidentally is the National Chairman , have thrown their weight behind Oyetola, who many fear may t lose his exalted position at the Supreme Court, where those who understands the Constitution better may be forced to take another look at the Appeal Court Judgment and and give their own ruling on the case. the APC governor of Osun state has maintained that Adeleke, his closest rival during the last governorship in the state has no valid Certificate.
While the Oyetola camp may be licking their wound, over the Appeal Court Judgment, it has thrown the Adeleke amp into jubilation as people now see him as governor in waiting in the state. There is no gainsaying the fact that if the APC, should lose the Osun governorship election at the Supreme Court, it would become the second state to be lost by the party . The first state, Zamfara, was lost to the Opposition PDP, at the instance of INEC, based on the facts on the ground that the Candidates presented for the election in the state to the National Assembly, state Assembly and the governorship position were imposed on the party. The APC, on its part may have provided the ammunition for the electoral umpire to apply the sledge hammer by upturning the victory of the APC in the state in favour of the Opposition PDP, which came a distant second during the election into the various elective offices in the state because of the internal rivalry in the party.
Recall that some aggrieve members of the party and had gone to Court to challenge the Candidates presented by the Party for the election , insisting that there was no authentic primaries in the state. They had the accused the Oshiomhole led National Executive Council, NEC, of the party of conniving with the state Executive, and Abdulaziz Yari, the state governor and then Chairman, of Nigerian Governors Forum, NGF, to impose the Candidates, who were not the popular choice of the party members on the sate. The case was dragged to the Supreme Court which ruled that the did not hold a valid primary to select Candidates for the various elective offices in the state , and thus order Mahmud YAkubu, a Professor and INEC, Chairman, to declare the rival PDP Candidates winner of the elections in the state.
The fallout was that Muhtar Idris, who had earlier been declared winner by INEC, and issued Certificate of return lost the position to Bello Matawalle, who has sent a signal to armed bandits , armed robbers, Kinappers and other Criminal elements operating in the state to repent or face the full weight of the Law.
President Muhammadu Buhari may not have made any comment on the Zamfara incident because he believes that INEC, officials are doing their job. The loss of Zamfara state to the Opposition PDP may have informed the reason why the plot to remove Oshiomole as the national Chairman of the party is gain ground in the party circles daily. Top on the ist of those calling for his head in the party are Senator Lawal Shuaibu, the party Deputy National Chairman, Yahaya Abdulkarim, a former governor of old Sokoto state , Rochas Okorocha, a former governor of Imo state, who had wanted Uche Nwosu, his son-In Law, to succeed him but lost out to Emeka Ikedioha, a former Deputy Speaker, House of ad the PDP Cdidate as the governor of the state.
Okorocha had blamed the loss of the state to PDP to Oshiomhole and had vowed to fight back. The former Emperor of Imo state had dragged the former labour activist , turned politician to the Katsina state born Nigerian President’s Court but that was how far he could go. He had been joined in the protest by Ibikunle Amosun and Yari, both former governors of Ogun and Zamfara respectively. Many fear that it would be a miracle if Oshiomhole survives the strong opposition against him in the party as these political gladiators that have the ears of the President. The refusal of the President to speak on the matter speaks volume, fueling speculation that he may rijip the political architecture of the APC, to suit his second term in office.
Meanwhile Odegie Oyegun, a one-time governor of Edo state who was removed as the National Chairman of the party to pave way for Oshiomhole to step into his shoes , may be laughing at those who ploted his removal, beccause of the troubles that had befallen the party since the last general elections: losing Seats to the Opposition PDP, including governorship Seats. Already Atiku Abubkar, a former Vice President and business Mogul, and who incidentally was the PDP , Presidential Candidate in the February 3, 2019, election is still pushing to wrestle power from Buhari at the Tribunal. there are indicatons that his legal teams are waiting in the wings to appeal against the Tribunal ruling if their client loses at the Tribunal. Political watchers believe that the APC , officials and the President are holding tenaciously to the presidency and would never lose it to the rival to PDP having put its House in order to argue with one voice at the Tribunal.
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