Anyone Saying Oshiomhole Did Not Perform Is Commiting A Sin – Momoh | Independent Newspapers Limited
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Anyone Saying Oshiomhole Did Not Perform Is Commiting A Sin – Momoh

Tony Momoh
Posted: Oct 3, 2016 at 3:45 am   /   by   /   comments (6)

Prince Tony Momoh, served as Minister of Information and Culture during General Ibrahim Babangida’s regime from 1986-1990. He was National Chairman of the defunct Congress for Progressives Change (CPC), one of the three parties that merged to form the All Progressives Congress, (APC). In this interview with TEMIDAYO AKINSUYI, he spoke on the rift between Asiwaju Bola Tinubu and the party’s National Chairman, Chief John Odigie- Oyegun, Edo governorship election and other issues. Excerpts:

As one of the national leaders of the ruling APC, are you not worried about the raging crisis within your party which has now been made public with the statement issued by Asiwaju Bola Tinubu castigating the National Chairman of the party,  Chief John Odigie- Oyegun over the manner with which he handled the outcome of the party’s governorship primary in Ondo?

There is no crisis in APC.  You said Asiwaju Tinubu issued a public statement about what happened in Ondo APC Primary and the way the National Chairman handled it. Does that make it a crisis? There is no crisis. That Asiwaju Bola Tinubu made a statement does imply there is a crisis within the party.  Asiwaju is a national leader of the APC. There is nothing that be done in APC without consultation with him at a level he is aware of .So, if he decides to express his opinion at another level, then that is entirely his own means of expression. And if he at that level, he expresses his opinion openly when he is a national leader, then there is a problem and that problem does not constitute a national crisis for APC.

But are you satisfied with the way Oyegun handled the issue. There are reports five people voted that the primary okay while six voted against it, yet he went ahead to forward Chief Rotimi Akeredolu’s name to INEC?

Do you know the facts? If you ask him and he tells you that that is what happened, then one can pass judgements.  You can’t pass judgement on what you don’t know or have facts about. Asiwaju is not a member of the National Working Committee of the party. He must have been told what happened because he wasn’t there.

But why did he (Tinubu) choose to issue a statement castigating Oyegun when he is not at the meeting of the NWC?

Are you asking me? I am a lawyer, I don’t act on hearsay. If you say something happen, I will ask. On Asiwaju’s part, maybe he was so upset that he didn’t think it was necessary to ask and he wanted to make a point. But that will be his own calculations. I wouldn’t know. He is too experienced to play to the gallery.

The Edo election has come and gone and a winner has been declared in the person of Godwin Obaseki. What will be your message to the governor- elect?

The fact is that there is opportunity for continuity in Edo. Anybody who says Oshiomhole did not work in Edo is committing a sin because he really worked.  One of the greatest leaders in Edo that we celebrate is Ogbemudia and he attested to the fact that Oshiomhole worked.  We have been playing politics and it is a sin to discredit someone who has worked. But that election has come and gone. All hands will be on deck to continue to grow Edo state. Nobody should look down on the governor-elect, Godwin Obaseki because he was the brain-box of Oshiomhole’s administration for eight years. It is just like what Tinubu saw in ( Babatunde) Fashola when he had to leave all other associates and bring Fashola, a technocrat into the open.  It is the same thing that Oshiomhole found in Obaseki. Obaseki is not a politician, but a technocrat and the opportunity he has in Edo state will add value to what Oshiomhole has done.

The next governorship election will take place in Ondo on November 26. What are your expectations?

Our candidate will win Ondo, just like we have won Edo.  But then, we have to discipline ourselves and take care of the management of our internal affairs. We cannot go into battle with the kind of division that Asiwaju pointed to through his open letter.  We cannot go into battle that way. We must resolve it and people must know that APC is not a party of alliances.

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