Communications Minister, Adebayo Shittu, has questioned the moral integrity of the factional National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Adams Oshiomhole, on hitting at the Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Mahmood Yakubu, and for pushing for the resignation.
The drama was playing out at the top level of the ruling party as the leadership of the Third Force Movement under the umbrella of Nigeria Intervention Movement insisted on their endorsement of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar, for this Saturday’s poll.
The movement’s Director of Media and Publicity, Debo Adeniyi, said the decision of the third force stakeholders was without prejudice to the recently-concluded opinion polls by Alliance for Defence of Democracy to pick a consensus candidate to contest against the APC and the PDP.
According to him, Atiku was chosen based on his promise to restructure Nigeria: ‘’Our support for Atiku, an ardent apostle of restructuring of the Nigerian state, gives our movement a better and more feasible prospects of taking charge of a new Nigeria in the shortest possible time.’’
The movement which is under the leadership of Dr Olisa Agbakoba (SAN), and Dr Abduljalil Tafawa Balewa, had mandated the Director-General of NIM to immediately mobilise all officials, members, stakeholders and allies of the Third Force Movement under the umbrella of NIM to vote and work for Atiku enmasse as a major political bloc in the country with over seven million membership.
Shittu however, says Oshiomhole lacks a moral platform to go after the INEC big boss, claiming that the APC factional chief conducted the most fraudulent primary in the history of the ruling party.
According to the obviously angry minister, ‘’I will not support such call for resignation of the INEC chairman. To err is human. We have not seen any political motivation as to what has happened in INEC. When Oshiomhole supervised that party primaries elections, which can be described as most horrible and corrupt in the history of the party, who called for his resignation?.
‘’If Oshiomhole calls for resignation of the INEC chairman, he should also be preparing to resign as chairman of APC for conducting primaries marred by irregularities, and even accused of corruption in its conduct. Did anybody ask him to resign for the horrible management of primary elections under his watch?
‘’If you bring in another chairman, when does such person begin to learn the process? Or will you on the basis of that call for another rescheduling of the elections? Certainly, it is unacceptable for anyone to ask for resignation of INEC chairman.’’