Ocholi’s death: Crisis as Buhari set to compensate Faleke

By Amako Nneji March 14, 2016 15:10

Ocholi’s death: Crisis as Buhari set to compensate Faleke

There seems to be a fresh crack on the wall of the ruling All Progressives Congress, APC, as President Muhammadu Buhari, has concluded plans to replace the late Minister of State for Labour and Employment, James Ocholi, with Honourable James Abiodun Faleke, Post-Nigeria gathered.

Faleke who is the political son of the defacto National Chairman of the APC, Bola Tinubu, and lawmaker representing Ikeja Federal Constituency in the House of Representatives was late Abubakar Audu’s running mate in the November 21, 2015 inconclusive governorship poll in Kogi state.

The late Ocholi who occupied the Kogi State ministerial slot in Buhari’s cabinet died in a motor accident while travelling along Abuja – Kaduna road along with his wife and son on Sunday, March 6, 2016.

Before now, reports had gone viral that the president is likely to undertake a minor cabinet reshuffle before the end of March.

It was gathered that the current Minister of Information, Culture and Tourism, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, is likely to be replaced due to complaints from senior members of the APC and members of President Buhari’s kitchen cabinet over what they termed Lai’s unprofessional information management.

Post-Nigeria gathered that the latest move to appoint Faleke as a possible replacement for the late Ocholi, is a ploy to pacify the lawmaker to withdraw the case he instituted before the tribunal against the incumbent governor of Kogi State, Yahaya Bello.

Related:  Faleke fumes as Yahaya Bello is sworn in as Governor

Recall, that Late Audu, the governorship candidate of the APC, was already cruising to victory until he died the same time his election was declared inconclusive.

His runner-up in the APC primaries, Yahaya Bello, was picked by the party as his replacement for the December 5, re-run election.

However, Faleke kicked against this and refused to be sworn-in as Bello’s deputy, during the inauguration.

Related: Faleke fumes as Yahaya Bello is sworn in as Governor

He had argued that the election had already been won and lost before the supplementary poll, saying he should be declared winner.

Faleke told journalists that he was confident justice would be done in the matter, pointing out that he did not join his party, the APC as a respondent in the suit.

He also has challenged the Independent National Electoral Commission’s, INEC, decision in declaring the election inconclusive when the result showed that by all standards the election was concluded and won by the APC ticket of Audu and Faleke.

In his first letter, Faleke said he was the proper beneficiary of the cast vote, and urged the commission to declare him governor-elect.

In a second letter to the National Chairman of the APC, John Oyegun, through his lawyer, Wole Olanipekun, he again highlighted the danger of acceding to INEC’s directive of selecting a fresh candidate.

Faleke was on January 9, detained at the headquarters of the DSS without any cogent reason before he was later released.

Post-Nigeria gathered that the fear that the tribunal might order the removal of Governor Bello has sent shivers in to the spine of the APC as subtle plans are been orchestrated to make Faleke to drop the case.

It could be recalled, that APC took a swipe at Faleke for approaching the tribunal saying that his action was an affront to the authority of the party.

“Faleke should beware of political jobbers around him who are reaping bountifully from his wrong steps. He should accept the position of his party and move on with his political life,” APC had said.

However, speculation is rift that making Faleke a minister might act as bait that would make him to drop his case against Bello.

Related: APC launches fresh attack against Faleke