The National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Comrade Adams Oshiomhole, returned to the country on Saturday and opened up on his encounter with officers of the Department of State Services (DSS).
Oshiomhole, who met with Editors in Lagos, after his return from London, however, described his engagement with the DSS officers as a “conversation” and not an “arrest” or “detention.”
The embattled National Chairman was said to have visited his wife, who is ill, in the United States and later met with the APC National Leader, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu in London.
Oshiomhole had been at the centre of controversy emanating from his purported arrest and detention by DSS officers in the past few days.
“The conversation centred around APC primaries. The question now is whether or not it is the DSS job to interfere in a political party’s issues. And if there’s an allegation of corruption, it is the responsibility of EFCC and ICPC,” the former Edo State governor said.
He dismissed the rumor that the DSS rescheduled another meeting with him after the initial one. He also denied the report that he was released on administrative bail by the Kogi State Governor, Alhaji Yahaya Bello, saying he only invited the governor who showed up where he had interaction with the DSS officials.
“I was the one who called Yahaya Bello and he came, but I drove home in my own car,” Oshiomhole said.
On the call for his arrest by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), the APC National Chairman said: “what would they have said if it was the PDP chairman that was invited by the DSS, for instance, over the dollar bazaar at their Port Harcourt primary? They would have said democracy is under threat and would have fired a letter to the UN, as they often ridicule themselves”.
His “arrest” and subsequent “detention” was said to have been orchestrated by some aggrieved party leaders, many of whom are sitting governors, wherein their preferred aspirants failed to win the party’s tickets for various positions.
Oshiomhole suddenly left the country Tuesday after interrogation for hours by the Department of State Services (DSS) last Sunday and Monday.
On the report that the DSS wanted to compel him to resign, he said it was not the responsibility of the service to do so, adding that he is not answerable to them.
Oshiomhole, who came back to Nigeria on Friday after visiting his wife and the APC National Leader, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, in the US and UK respectively, dismissed reports that he has been scheduled to meet again with the DSS soon upon his return to the country.
The APC chairman, who has been up in arms with some governors of the party, particularly Rochas Okorocha of Imo State and Ibikunle Amosun of Ogun State, said that he only disagreed with them on the realities of the outcome of the party’s primaries.
He pointed out that Okorocha has been his friend and had supported him when he was running for the chairmanship of the party, but said that he cannot help the Imo governor to build his dynasty.
Governor Okorocha has been insisting to produce his son-in-law, Uche Nwosu, as his successor, but the party released the name of Senator Hope Uzodinma as its governorship candidate in Imo.
According to Oshiomhole, the declaration of the party’s primary election results was beyond friendship, saying that when friendship goes beyond or runs contrary to national interest the latter takes precedence.
He also said that in the case of Amosun, he has not seen where only one man would present names to fill over 40 positions without carrying his people along.