Former national chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Comrade Adams Oshiomhole, has reviewed his comments on the party’s registration exercise, saying he was misrepresented.
The erstwhile APC national chairman added that he remained unquestionably loyal to President Muhammadu Buhari, with abiding faith in the leadership of the party.
He dismissed the interpretations in some quarters that his comments on the APC registration and revalidation exercise weeks ago amounted to an affront on the president and the leadership of the APC.
Oshiomhole it would be recalled, had on February 9, after registering in his Iyamho hometown in Etsako West Local Government Area of Edo State, expressed reservations on the ‘revalidation’ tag of the ongoing APC membership registration drive and queried the constitutionality of the exercise, maintaining that his membership had not expired.
He had on that occasion suggested that revalidating existing members who had not rescinded their membership as amounting to double registration.
But in a statement released on Saturday night, Oshiomhole faulted the claims that his comments amounted to an affront of President Buhari and the leadership of the party, saying such interpretation is unreflective of his intentions when he made the comments.
He said his advice on the usage of the word ‘update’ as a better tag for the membership registration exercise, as opposed to the ‘revalidation’ used, was informed by the dictates of section 9.4 of the APC constitution which prescribes the process of regular update of the register.
“Even in expressing my reservation about the use of the word ‘revalidation’, I also at the same time acknowledged the necessity to carry out the exercise of updating the register: deleting those who have died or resigned, and register new members,” he stated.
According to him, “In addition, the fact that I left Abuja and traveled all the way to my village in Edo State to again register at my unit and went further to encourage other APC members to do likewise, demonstrates my faith and commitment to the party.”
Oshiomhole added that his National Working Committee (NWC), had resolved to make the same decision before its dissolution and he therefore could not have attacked the leadership of the party for same, as being falsely speculated in some quarters.
He emphasized his total loyalty to President Buhari, recounting how the leadership role the President played in his emergence as the national chairman of the APC and the support he gave to him in the role despite stiff opposition from certain quarters.
“The President worked tirelessly to persuade and campaigned to influential leaders and members of the party in support of my Chairmanship candidature. Indeed, as I have said before and it bears repeating that I may not have lasted as long as I did in office, but for the support of Mr. President who on several occasions resisted pressure on him,” Oshiomhole pointed out
“Unlike some others, I’m not an ingrate. I remain appreciative of Mr. President’s commendation of my stewardship as Governor of Edo State, a week to the end of my tenure, where he publicly at two various events in Benin City, including the palace of the Oba of Benin said that “the APC would need my services in Abuja. This commendation understandably triggered mixed feelings – a few saw me as a threat while many others applauded Mr President’s statement,” he emphasised.