Final End As Chairman; Did Oshiomhole Actually Embezzle Edo State And APC Money?


If there are truths to recent speculations, then, the end may finally be here for embattled, suspended National Chairman of the APC, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole. SaharaReporters seem to suggest that Adams Oshiomhole‘s account of stewardship might be demanded at the next NEC meeting of the party slated for tomorrow at the Aso Rock Villa. 

The former Edo state Governor before now was accused by his successor, Governor Godwin Obaseki of mismanagement of Edo state resources. And who should know better, other than Oshiomhole‘s Chief of Staff for almost seven years, Obaseki? We all thought that possibly, Obaseki was trying to blackmail his benefactor in order to get the APC gubernatorial ticket by hook or crook. 

However, there are now similar accusations trailing Oshiomhole as National Chairman of APC. That accusation, as reported, may be the reason why his tenure is probably going to end after tomorrow‘s NEC meeting. There is an adage in Yoruba language which implies that, ‘you have to take note when the same person keeps getting accused of the same things over and over again’.

Obaseki, on several occasions accused Oshiomhole of wanting to continue milking Edo state. He had in some instances threatened to use law enforcement agencies to arrest his predecessor. He also alleged that the suspended National Chairman wanted to impose his candidates as part of current Edo state Executives. In fact, Oshiomhole recently had to obtain a court injunction to prevent an imminent arrest by Edo state government.

Obaseki accused Oshiomhole of awarding inflated contracts during his two terms as governor. He gave examples of several projects to buttress his allegations. One prominent case is the Benin Central Hospital which Obaseki refused to commission for more than three years. His reason being that substandard materials went into that particular project.

As things stand, we may never know what actually transpired because, politicians have a way of covering their tracks. They know how to protect one another's misconducts... until political exigencies make them to cross paths. That's when they would start exposing one another, as though they really care about the masses. Sometimes you can't take accusations at face value because, on many occasions, that is what it is... politics, plain and simple.

However, there are subtle hints that discerning minds can use to make their own conclusions about who may be telling the truth. One such hint is to determine whether someone who's accused of embezzlement is actually a vain person. On this particular point, I would say that Adams Oshiomhole failed woefully, due to an appalling incident.

After leaving office as governor, the Edo state legislature, which was dominated by the APC, passed a repugnant Pensions Law. That law made Oshiomhole to be entitled to a house worth N200m at any location of the former governor‘s choosing. It caused such national uproar, and many actually thought the former comrade governor could never accept such a gesture. But rather than denounce the law, Oshiomhole actually kept silent.

This is the same man, a former NLC National President, who was beloved because he apparently identified with the plight of the lowest earning civil servants. He fought for them to have their minimum wage raised slightly above N5,000. That same man will now continue to earn the same amount he earned as governor for the rest of his life, as life pension.

A second hint that may tell that Oshiomhole probably had something to hide after eight years as governor, is how he chose his successor. It's fair to believe that he singlehandedly chose his successor, Obaseki, in such a manner that the current Governor would owe everything to him. 

Obaseki wasn't a contender to succeed Oshiomhole, in fact he was such a political ‘lightweight’ that he never expressed interest in becoming Governor... until he was picked. It now appears that Oshiomhole‘s overbearing influence became unbearable for Obaseki.

Back to the APC crisis 

It now appears that old habits die hard, based on the report by Saharareporters. Similar accusations of overbearing influence, imposition of candidates, and embezzlement, are now trailing Adams Oshiomhole. The same way he imposed Obaseki on Edo state APC chapter now appears to be the same manner he tried to impose Abiola Ajimobi as acting National Chairman, against party constitution. 

Had the courts not declared Giadom as the authentic Acting National Chairman, we probably wouldn't have heard anything about Oshiomhole‘s alleged misdemeanors. Some of Oshiomhole‘s sins allegedly include the following:

1) Imposing Abiola Ajimobi as Deputy National Chairman, South, without election nor ratification by the APC NEC

2) Failure to convene NEC meetings every 3 months as stipulated by article 35 of the party's constitution (only twice since 2018

3) Paying each member of the NWC N2m each per month, against the party‘s constitution 

4) Failure to account for monies realized during 2019 general elections (sales of nomination forms, expression of interest forms, etc.)

The fourth and final item on the list of offenses is probably the gravest. Money is so powerful that it can shatter longstanding relationships in a twinkle of an eye. Even if Oshiomhole is able to survive other allegations, this particular one has the potential to eventually swallow him up.

The signs are not particularly good for Oshiomhole because, it was reported, as stated by Garba Shehu, that Mr President has thrown his weight behind Giadom as Acting Chairman. Another worrying sign is that so called National Leader, Bola Tinubu, has kept a deafening silence all through the period when the party was at the verge of implosion.