There is disquiet in the South-West chapter of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) over the growing influence of Senator Ibikunle Amosun, former governor of Ogun state in President Muhammadu Buhari’s government.
A chieftain of the party who spoke with Daily Independent on Monday said they are displeased with the influence Amosun , who is currently the Senator representing Ogun-Central wields at the federal level despite all he did against the party’s interest in the 2019 general elections in Ogun state which eventually culminated in his suspension by the National Working Committee (NWC) of the party.
The party chieftain said they may schedule a meeting with President Buhari over the worrisome development.
He said from feelers they are getting , some powerbrokers in the Presidency, popularly referred to as the cabals are positioning Amosun, who has been a long-standing associate of President Buhari as a replacement for Vice- President Yemi Osinbajo who is under intense pressure to resign.
If that happens, he said anyone who succeeds Osinbajo and completes the tenure with President Buhari will be the choice of the North for the 2023 presidential election. This may in turn threaten the presidential ambition of Asiwaju Bola Tinubu’s the party’s national leader who is rumoured to be nursing the ambition to succeed Buhari in 2023.
“From all indications, the pendulum might swing in favour of Amosun because he has been allowed to have his way and say in the ongoing dispensation”.
He said by giving Amosun key appointments despite his being on suspension, President Buhari is “allowing Amosun to build his federal structures for reasons best known to them”.
According to him , “rather than ratify Amosun’s suspension at the National Executive Council (NEC), the APC’s highest decision making body to serve as a deterrent to others, the President has continued to treat Amosun as the most influential politician in the South- West with choice appointments to the detriment of other leaders in Ogun state such as Governor Dapo Abiodun and Aremo Olusegun Osoba, a former governor of the state”.
“Amosun’s former Commissioner for Urban and Physical Planning, Mrs. Ronke Sokefun is the present Chairman of the Nigerian Deposit Insurance Corporation (NDIC). His former Commissioner for Works and Infrastructure, Arch. Olamilekan Adegbite, is the present Minister for Solid Minerals and Steel Development”.
“His former Commissioner for Special Duties and Intergovernmental Affairs, Barrister Leke Adewolu is the Executive Commissioner, Stakeholders Management at the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC)”.
His former Special Adviser on Rural Development, Adewale Ogunyomade has just been nominated as the South West representative at the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS). Now despite all he did, his suspension has just been lifted by the NWC. We are watching as the development unfolds” he said.
It will be recalled that Amosun in obvious violation of the APC’s constitution worked against the APC’s choice in the governorship election after failing in his bid to get the party’s ticket. His anointed candidate, Adekunle Akinlade decamped to the Allied Peoples Movement (APM) and Amosun openly declared support for him while asking his loyalists to vote for President Buhari in the presidential election.
He also contested for the senatorial election for Ogun Central on APC platform and won.
Amosun had been with President Buhari since the years of the defunct All Nigeria Peoples Party (ANPP). They continued their friendship even after Buhari left the ANPP to form the Congress for Progressives Change (CPC) and Amosun joined the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN). They both became members of APC when the three parties merged in 2013. Their friendship has blossomed since then.
(Last Updated On: December 17, 2019)