By Omeiza Ajayi
Contending forces in the national leadership of the ruling All Progressives Congress, APC, seemed to have sheathed their swords, as the National Chairman of the party, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole, yesterday inaugurated Arc. Waziri Bulama as acting National Secretary of the party.
Bulama’s nomination had suffered a series of setbacks for several months, as the party’s National Vice Chairman (North East), Comrade Mustapha Salihu, kicked against his candidature, describing his emergence as a product of narrow interests.
Salihu had accused Oshiomhole of trying to foist Bulama on the party without considering the position of the North East zonal chapter of the APC, which he (Salihu) chairs.
The matter had degenerated into a string of lawsuits, with anti-Oshiomhole forces teaming up with his state governor, Godwin Obaseki, who had been at loggerheads with the national chairman.
However, there was a mild drama at the swearing in ceremony, which took place at the party’s National Secretariat, yesterday, as Comrade Salihu, who was also in attendance, asked the national chairman to halt the process and clear out journalists, to allow for a five minute meeting of the party leaders.
The meeting, however, lasted more than 30 minutes before journalists were allowed back into the hall.
At the event, which had two governors, Prof. Babagana Zulum of Borno State and Mohammed Inuwa of Gombe in attendance, Oshiomhole said: “The party had a meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari, the governor of Yobe State, and also consulted other stakeholders of the party and we came to the conclusion that Arc. Waziri Bulama should be admitted as the acting National Secretary of the party, pending the ratification by the National Convention.”
Speaking shortly after the inauguration, Gombe State Governor, Mohammed Inuwa, said Bulama would add value to the party, adding that he had known him for over four decades.
He said: “I am very happy that it ended this way. It took some time for us to have this replacement but what is more important is that at the end of the day, we were able to come to a resolution and the new National Secretary has been sworn in today (yesterday).
“We hope he will work with other leaders and consolidate on the gains of the party. I have known Architect Buluma in the last 40 years. I know that he is a person of impeccable character, a person that you can vouch for and he is very hardworking.
‘’He knows what to do. In fact, he has already started doing that, trying to work and carry everybody along so that APC would deliver on its mandate and that is what he is going to do.”
Bulama on his part, said he had no personal agenda to pursue, adding that he would work with all stakeholders to foster unity and enhance the fortunes of the party.