DESPITE the seeming resolution of the crisis in the national leadership of the All Progressives Congress (APC) with the return of Comrade Adams Oshiomhole as the national chairman of the party, the same may not be said of the Edo State chapter of the party as a faction of the party loyal to Oshiomhole has opened a new secretariat.
The secretariat which is less than two kilometres from the original office of the party was opened with fanfare, prayers and thanksgiving service with several leaders and members of the APC in the state led by two governorship aspirants; former deputy governor of the state, Rt Hon Pius Odubu and Saturday Uwalekhue while other governorship aspirants were said to be in Abuja in solidarity with Oshiomhole.
But the leadership of the faction loyal to Governor Godwin Obaseki and led by Anselm Ojezua yesterday insisted that it is the legally recognized leadership of the party and the secretariat it occupies is the only recognized APC state secretariat in the state.
The spokesperson of the faction loyal to Oshiomhole, Chris Azebanmwan told Vanguard yesterday that Col David Imuse (rtd) is the acting chairman of the party as he said Ojezua has been legitimately removed.
This he said was confirmed when it was Imuse that attended the last NEC meeting of the party as Edo state chairman and that he was also there when state chairmen visited President Muhammadu Buhari.
He said: “After we removed Anselm Ojezua in November last year, armed thugs took over the secretariat in their thinking that we want to eject Ojezua from the office, but we know that no Edo citizen’s blood is worth the political ambition of anybody because we were aware that all of those that they were doing was in furtherance of Mr Governor’s second term ambition. So we decided that at the end of the day the building does not make the secretariat. If the National Secretariat of our party wants to get in touch with our party in Edo state, they will get in touch with us wherever we are located. It was fortunate that the Campaign office of Mr President for his second term was available so we decided to adopt that place as our operational base”
When contacted, the Spokesperson of the faction loyal to Obaseki, Pastor Joseph Osagiede said “I am not aware of any other state secretariat. That is not allowed by law, our party does not allow for two secretariats so that is illegal”