With Mumini Abdulkareem
Following the leadership crisis that has engulfed the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) the Deputy National Publicity Secretary of the party, Mr. Yekini Nabena and the National Publicity Secretary, Mallam Lanre Issa-Onilu both lay claim to the post of the party’s spokesperson last night.
According to a statement issued by Nabena on Sunday in Abuja, he said the substantive occupant of the office, Mallam Lanre Issa-Onilu cease to be the party’s mouthpiece until the time he (Onilu) vacates a Court order restraining him from duty
A Sokoto High Court last week had restrained the party from appointing or electing “Mallam Lanre Issa-Onilu or any member” into its top positions except through a National Convention.
Nabena said understanding reached with Onilu, he would act pending the time the substantive National Publicity Secretary will sort out the court matter.
According to Nabena, “APC is a law abiding party and as leaders of the party we must be seen doing the right thing at all time, including respecting the order of the court.
In lieu of this, Mallam Onilu has began the process of vacating the order of the Sokoto High Court restraining him but pending the time this will be done I will act in his position.
“Unlike the former ruling party, APC has high regard for the judiciary and we must be seen at all times practicing what we preach,” Nabena stated.
The deputy National Publicity Secretary then called for understanding among the APC supporters and urged the media and other stakeholders to cooperate with him in carrying out the assignment as usual.
He assured media representatives of prompt responses to enquiries and clarifications while creating mutual understanding between the public and the governing party.
Efforts to get Issa-Onilu’s reaction to the development failed, as our reporter’s telephone calls went unanswered.
But Issa-Onilu dismissed claim to his office by his deputy, Mr. Yekini Nabena and described it as a joke carried too far, insisting that he remains the party spokesperson.
Issa-Onilu, who in a telephone interview said that Nebena was only chasing shadows, as he has no case in any court restraining him from carrying out his duties as the spokesperson of the governing party?
Onilu however debunked the claim by his deputy, saying; “no court ruling has restrained me from being the National Publicity Secretary of the party. There’s no any such court judgment restraining me. He’s (Nabena) chasing shadows”.
He further argued that “in the case he (Nabena) referred to, my deputy claimed that the court restrained the party from appointing or electing Mallam Lanre Issa-Onilu or any member into its top positions except through a National Convention.
“For me, I am not seeking for any office that will warrant restraining the party from appointing or electing me. My office is not vacant or being contested for. I remain the National Publicity Secretary of our great party, the All Progressives Congress,” he maintained.
Recall that the National Vice Chairman, North West of the party, Bar Inuwa Abdulkadir in a Motion Exparte dated March 13, 2020 and filed before Justice Mohammed Mohammed of Sokoto High Court sought an order of the court to restrain the APC from appointing Issa-Onilu into any substantive position.