By Ikechukwu Nnochiri
ABUJA—THE internal crisis rocking the All Progressives Congress, APC, has taken a new dimension as the national legal adviser of the party, Babatunde Ogala, has accused Adams Oshiomhole of hijacking his office.
In an internal memo dated November 6, and addressed to Oshiomhole, Ogala accused the national chairman of denigrating the party’s legal department.
This development is coming three months to the general election and at a time the ruling party ought to focus on the campaigns which kicked off yesterday, in line with the schedule of the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC.
In the memo, Ogala said since he became the party’s legal adviser on June 25, his department had not been funded.
He alleged that Oshiomhole had sidelined him and refused to consult him over issues his office was supposed to handle.
Ogala said: “I am constrained to put this memo and complaint in writing in the light of the repeated acts of usurpation and deliberate encroachment on my office and attempt to undermine my person.
“You will recall that you have previously done this in two previous matters wherein you had purportedly, without recourse to me, briefed the Law Firm of D. D. Dodo & Co. in suit No: FCT/HC/CV/9265/2018. Ugwumba Uche Nwosu Vs. APC & 1or. and you also without recourse to us, debriefed the law firm of Adeniyi Akintola, SAN, who had been briefed by the office of Legal Adviser.
“As if that was not enough, you procured a secretary in your office to depose an affidavit on behalf of the party wherein the deponent lied on oath that he had the authority of the party to depose to the said affidavit.
“The motion filed by the Law Firm of D. D. Dodo & Co. also told a lie that processes were served on the Legal Department in a certain suit No: FCT/HC/BW/CV/ 307/2018. Senator Hope Uzodinma vs APC & 2ors but that was not brought to your notice.
“This was an assertion that was false in every material particular and an attempt to denigrate the legal department and my office, as no such process was ever served on the legal department.”
Oshiomhole wants to use Masari, Ogala alleges
The legal adviser said the latest attempt to usurp his office was a move by Oshiomhole to use Ibrahim Masari, national welfare secretary.
Ogala said: “I had received a soft copy of a purported affidavit in support of a motion on Notice in a matter filed at the Federal High Court, Abuja, between the All Progressives Congress, APC, and the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC.
“The said affidavit was deposed by Ibrahim Kabir Masari, the national welfare secretary and purporting to have the authority of the national working committee.
“It was, therefore, to my consternation, shock and surprise that I stumbled on the affidavit deposed to by the national welfare secretary purporting to act on behalf of the NWC. I was elected to protect the party’s constitution, and not have same disobeyed by will, I will not shirk the responsibility.”
He said the chairman on an earlier occasion, had apologised to him after he protested the encroachment into his office.
“When I became aware of this aberration and falsity, upon your raising same at the National Working Committee meeting, I vehemently protested same and took serious exception to the encroachment while vowing to resist same.
“You accepted and did apologise to me at the meeting and I honestly believed that lessons have been learnt and moved on.”