Ondo election: ACPN leaders bicker over APC ties

Well over a month after the conclusion of the Ondo State governorship election, the Allied Congress Party of Nigeria, ACPN, which participated in the election, is currently embroiled a crisis arising from the poll.

Members of the party are at loggerheads with the party chairman, Bosun Omosule, over allegations that he and some of the party leaders have sold out to the ruling All Progressives Congress.

PREMIUM TIMES gathered that the candidate of the party, Adetunwo Ogunjumelo, who scored 2,524 votes in the governorship election, is angry with Mr. Omosule, for meeting with the governor-elect, Rotimi Akeredolu, for possible participation in the incoming government.

A source close to the party revealed that Mr. Ogunjumelo was also angry that party leaders failed to support his campaigns financially during the election but were finding time to embrace the APC which ACPN contested against.

An emergency meeting held at Mr. Ogunjumelo’s campaign office in Akure on Wednesday rose with a resolution to sack the chairman of the party for what they described as “fraudulent and anti-party activities”.

The communique from the meeting, obtained by PREMIUM TIMES, said that Mr. Omosule and his deputy, Akimrenwa Olatunji, were seem holding meetings with Mr. Akeredolu, the APC candidate on November 23, 2016, three days before the governorship election.

They alleged that Mr. Omosule was also seen participating in the rally organised by Eyitayo Jegede, the PDP candidate on November 24, without the consent of the party executive members.

The document which was signed by Mr. Ogunjumelo, the gubernatorial candidate and another member of the party, accused the embattled chairman of collecting N165, 000 from the former to provide security for his campaign rally during the election, but failed to attend the rally and also refused to pay out the money for the purpose for which it was disbursed.

Mr. Omosule is also being accused of collecting N100, 000 monthly from the party’s candidate for the payment of the secretariat staff of the party since March 2015, but paying only N25, 000 monthly.

According to the angry party men, the chairman collected other sums of money meant for the party before carting away items from the office of the party.

But Mr. Omosule had denied the allegations, saying that those who claimed to have removed him from office were neither in the executive of the party nor were they in any position to reach such decisions.

He told PREMIUM TIMES that the candidate of the party in the last election and other ordinary members of the party did not have the powers to remove from office as stipulated by the party’s constitution.

He noted that those involved in the agitation had earlier petitioned the national headquarters over the allegations, but said the claims were found to be baseless resulting in the dismissal of the petition.

Mr. Omosule argued that Adetuwo Ogunjumelo, is angry because he lost the election, whereas he did not possess the popularity to win the election.

“How can somebody who scored only about 2500 votes and did not even win his poling unit where he voted be raising dust over campaign support,” he said.

“A candidate who decides to contest an election should be able to fund his campaigns and should not expect that the party would pay his campaign bills.”

Mr. Omosule said the allegations against him were false, and said he remained the chairman of the party.

“I am still the Chairman of the party in Ondo State,” he said. “The meeting they held is an illegal meeting, and we are going to meeting on Thursday to take a decision in the matter.”

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