The National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Adams Oshiomhole, has dismissed the call for his removal by a group of protesters.
This comes hours after the protesters, who are youths and purported members of the ruling party, stormed the APC national secretariat in Abuja on Monday to demand Oshiomhole’s removal as the party’s national chairman.
When asked for his reaction to the demonstration by the protesters under the aegis of Concerned APC Youths, Oshiomhole told Channels Television in Kaduna State that he cannot respond to “a non-existing group.”
The protesters had demanded that the APC national chairman be removed from the office on the grounds that the party has lost more states under him.
The youths, who carried various placards with inscriptions, decried that the most recent state that got off the party’s grip was Bayelsa.
They called on President Muhammadu Buhari to intervene in the affairs of the party and address what they claim to be the dwindling fortunes of the APC under Oshiomhole.
The protest comes four days after the Supreme Court sacked APC’s David Lyon and his running mate, Biobarakuma Degi-Eremieoyo, as the winners of the November 16, 2019 governorship election.
The duo were sacked a day to their inauguration while the judgement came just as Lyon was rehearsing for his swearing-in Yenagoa, the Bayelsa State capital.
A five-man panel of the apex court led by Justice Mary Peter-Odili had ordered the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to withdraw the Certificate of Return issued to APC candidates and issue fresh ones to the candidate of the party with the next highest votes, and with the required constitutional spread of votes in the results of the election.
The verdict was given on the grounds that Degi-Eremieoyo submitted forged certificates to INEC while the court upheld the November 12, 2019 judgment of the Federal High Court in Abuja which disqualified him.
The deputy-governorship candidate, according to Justice Ejembi Ekwo who read the lead judgment on Thursday last week, infected the joint ticket with which he and the Lyon ran for and won the election.
Bayelsa State Governor, Douye Diri, receives the Certificate of Return at the INEC headquarters in Abuja on February 14, 2020. Photo: Channels TV/ Sodiq Adelakun.
A day after the judgement, INEC confirmed the receipt of the Certified True Copy of the apex court verdict and reviewed the results of the election while the votes of the APC were excluded.
The electoral umpire, thereafter, declared Senator Douye Diri and Senator Lawrence Ewhrudjakpo of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) as the winner of the election amid party faithful at the INEC office in Abuja.
Hours later, Senator Diri and Senator Ewhrudjakpo travelled back to Bayelsa where they were inaugurated on Friday last week.