National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress, APC, Adams Oshiomhole has denied accusations of perpetuating himself as the new godfather of Edo politics.
Oshiomhole made the denial on Sunday while fielding questions from State House correspondents after leading some APC members to meet with President Muhammadu Buhari at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
Speaking on the latest crisis rocking the party in Edo state, the APC National Chairman challenged his accusers to come up with proofs.
He said, “What is the evidence? It’s all about accusation. They have to give you the particulars of that godfatherism. What’s the evidence? I am a democrat. That I accept the credit, not only that, I fought godfatherism”
Oshiomhole boasted that he did not only destroy the concept of godfathers in Edo politics but also launched the one man one vote campaign to fight against election rigging anywhere in Nigeria.
He said, “By the special grace of God under PDP with Anenih alive, and at his best, I won all the 18 local government areas and I won 95 percent of the total votes cast in my second term election.
“So, Edo people know me and I know them. I don’t need short-cut to sustain my position in the system. But you know that there is nobody in Nigeria who is not open to accusations. The important thing is that he who accuses should give you proofs.“
The former Edo State governor also condemned the use of few members of the State House of Assembly to elect leadership of the House, without the consent of majority of the members.
“You know that what happened in Edo was that they did not publicize a proclamation letter, the members were not informed, they did the inauguration at 9:30 pm in what in a Supreme Court judgement they call nocturnal hours. Business of parliament are done transparently; they are not secret cult. Now you have 24 member House, 19 members protested.
“You have six and you carry people in their short knickers, even in the House they have rules, the dress code.
“So, it happened in Edo, it has happened in Bauchi. Like Edo, Bauchi used the minority of 10 to go and proclaim the House and lockout 20 APC members and got those 10 people to elect, exactly the way Edo did with 6 and then co opted other 3 people to become 9 and even at that, it is nonsense.
“For us these are completely illegal. And that is why we said so. If it is wrong, it is wrong whether it is done by APC or by PDP.
“I believe by the end of the day, the solution is return to the rule of law. Let’s properly follow the law; let the parliament do what they have to do but people have the right to lobby for people they want and whom they prefer. This is also legitimate.”
He called on the states to emulate the example of the National Assembly where the contestants and party officials lobbied to be elected as leaders of the Legislature, culminating in the election of leaders through the secret ballot.
According to him, “We have an APC Senator, who in spite of all the efforts invested by all our leaders including Mr. President, insisted that he will contest.
“The law allowed him so, we couldn’t stop him. The President could have said ok SSS please find excuse to invite him for questioning the day before; put him away until the elections are over. But we won’t do that.
“That is not the change we promised. The change we promised is to try to improve in the ways public institutions are managed and how rules are implemented. I believe that it will be resolved.”