The youths under the aegis of the National Committee of Yoruba Youth (NCYY) led by their National President, Mr. Oladimeji Odeyemi claimed that the manner that Oyegun handled the governorship election in Ondo State was unacceptable and a ploy to destroy the party that Asiwaju Tinubu had laboured so hard to build.
The spiral effects of the cold war between the National Leader of the All Progressives Congress, APC, Asiwaju Ahmed Tinubu and the National Chairman of the party, Chief John Odigie-Oyegun spread to Oyo State on Tuesday as their loyalists stood in defence of their leaders.
While pro-Tinubu youths in the party insisted that the embattled party chairman must resign his position, the pro-Oyegun group dismissed their calls as unreasonable.
Arguing that the role that Oyegun played in the issue was unbecoming of a leader, they said the most and only honourable thing that the national chairman can do is to toe the path of honour and bow out.
They took the protest to the zonal secretariat of the South-West of the party at Alakia, Ibadan where they submitted a letter entitled “an open letter demanding for the resignation of Chief Odigie-Oyegun as the national chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC).”
To them, the earlier call by the national leader of the party, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu that Chief Oyegun should step aside was not an overstatement and must not be ignored or treated with kid gloves.
Reacting in an electronic mail, the other group, APC United Front, through its Chairman, Alhaji Ibrahim Musa, praised Chief Odigie-Oyegun for taking into consideration shades of opinions of the different party leaders, supporters and well-wishers concerning the party’s growth and progress.
“APC is not in trouble. Chief John Odigie-Oyegun is not APC’s problem. He is a man of facts, not given over to wild speculation or sensationalism. His moral reputation is a great asset to the party,” it said.
They chided Frank for not respecting the national chairman of the party, urging him and his sponsors to stop factionalizing the party and focus on party programs and policy statements.
According to the letter, “The National Committee of Yoruba Youths (NCYY), wishes to demand for the immediate resignation of Chief John Odigie-Oyegun as the national chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC).
“Our call today is premised on the refusal of Chief Oyegun, to toe the line of honour and integrity by yielding to earlier calls by prominent Nigerians and stakeholders within the party including the party’s national leader, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, who had earlier demanded for his resignation based on several allegations of high-handedness, mismanagement, gross disdain for the party’s constitution and its established hierarchy.
“As Yoruba people, we are deeply worried about how Chief Oyegun and some desperate elements within the party, have succeeded in polarising a once united APC in the South-West, through his shameful and fraudulent handling of the outcome of the APC Governorship primaries in Ondo State.
“We have also over the time watched with keen interest the undue political victimisation, persecution and harassment of the Acting National Publicity Secretary of the party, Mr. Timi Frank, by a despicable cabal allegedly led by Chief Oyegun.
“By this statement, we call on Chief Oyegun and this cabal to immediately put an end to the continuous blackmail, harassment and intimidation of Timi Frank. The latest in the several phases of the orchestrated campaign of calumny against Timi Frank is about current moves to get him suspended from the National Working Committee of APC, through the setting up of a kangaroo disciplinary committee to try Comrade Frank on trumped-up allegations bordering on anti-party activities.”
They vowed never to give in.
The association also expressed its concern that Chief Oyegun has refused to step down as the chairman of the party, despite a call by the national leader of the party.
“It is amazing that Chief Oyegun is even still sitting as the National Chairman of APC, despite the call from Asiwaju Bola Tinubu for his resignation. Has Chief Oyegun been a man of honour, he will not still be desperately clinging to the office of the national chairman of the party despite the vote of no confidence by his erstwhile benefactor, who invested enormous resources and goodwill to ensure his emergence as the APC national chairman.
“We wish to inform Nigerians, APC party faithful across the nation and particularly all peace and fact seeking ones that there is no established legal or political precedent for the charade that Chief Oyegun and this cabal are currently planning to embark upon by stampeding an elected party official from his assault against our collective interest.
“As stakeholders in the Nigerian project, we see that Chief Oyegun and his cohorts are embarking on political vendetta and sheer act of intimidation against Comrade Timi Frank,” the statement stated.