All Progressives Congress (APC) Chairman Adams Oshiomhole is confident that the party will reconcile with three of its governors who are aggrieved over the result of the primaries.
He named the governmors as Ibikunle Amosun (Ogun); Rochas Okorocha (Imo) and Abdulaziz Yari (Zamfara).
Speaking to reporters at Aso Villa after a meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari, Oshiomhole said he would not betray his conscience or what he believes is right to keep his job.
“And those who know, know that at my age I cannot learn new tricks. I am absolutely committed to justice, fairness. I’m a stickler to enforcement of rules; because the source of relevance is derived from rules. I have lived my life fighting for justice and fairness,” he said, adding:
“Three governors are not particularly pleased with the outcome of the primaries in their states.
“Change is easy, we all want change but the process of change can be traumatising.
“These are internal family issues; they are my friends, and that is important , even in moment of distress; that friendship I want to believe is enough to help us to build a reconciliation.
“There is no running away from the fact that we are the governing party, which has a higher stake; we are the one in the news. If we were in the stock market, our shares would have increased considerably.
“So, it is not surprising that there is some disquiet, but I remain a friend to these governors. I respect them; I appreciate them for the fact that but for their support, I will not be chairman and you don’t go stepping on toes of those who helped you to get into position.
“But however, I thought I was clear and I remain clear that helping me to get to the position, it was to help APC to return to its core values of progressive politics, of fairness, of justice, of adherence to rule of law and total submission to the extant provisions of our party constitution.
“In doing that, you don’t look at power; you look at what is; what is just.
I think that with time, we will reconcile all these; (Ibikunle) Amosun is my good friend; we have known each other for a very long time; we exchange personal visits in addition to official visits; Zamfara Governor (Yari) has been the Chairman of Nigeria Governors Forum (NGF) and I was an active member of that forum; we had a wonderful time together and I believe in the future, we are going to have wonderful time together. Rochas Okorocha is one of those who had issues with my predecessor and I did my best to try and resolve those issues.
“And I am happy that God used us to do that not by cheating in his favour but by doing what is right,” he said.
Oshiomhole went on: “It is just that once you stick to the goal, sometimes, you either get caught on the right side or the wrong side.
“I will say it is the tree that bears fruits that attracts stones; the tree that doesn’t bear fruits doesn’t attract any stones.
“I have no illusions; this job I am doing is not a pensionable job, but I did promise myself that if I am going to be on this job for one day, I will do according to the rules and according to my conscience; I will be fair and just to all and God will give me the courage and the wisdom to do His will. How far that can take me is exclusively in the hands of God.
“The truth is, we have 36 states and FCT and we do have 36 state organs and FCT and as far as I know, we have 23 governors; to be exact.
“If there was any temptation in Nigeria, it is temptation towards power, not temptation towards the powerless.
“So, all I have tried is to find some courage to enforce the rules and I think an overwhelming majority of the governors appreciate that I have done my best because change is not easy.
“We all want change but the process of change can be quite traumatising, because it is not painless. People have been used to a particular way of doing things; to encourge them to do them differently can be a challenge.
“We have a political system where it seems to the observer and even the analyst, that we have run a political system over the years where of you are very powerful, you simply can’t
“So, here I am as national chairman conducting primaries, the outcome of which some very powerful people did not see their preferred candidate emerging.”
Oshiomhole regretted that it is only in Nigeria that one can have 10 aspirants competing for one seat and one person emerges and the remaining nine will wonder why they did not win.