How Oshiomhole’s Criticism of Tinubu’s Policy Exposes the Rift Within APC

The ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) is facing a crisis of ideology and loyalty, as some of its prominent members have openly expressed their dissatisfaction with the policy direction of President Bola Tinubu.

One of them is Senator Adams Oshiomhole, a former governor of Edo State and a close ally of Tinubu, who recently criticised the nomination of Yemi Cardoso as the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).

Cardoso, a former commissioner in Lagos State under Tinubu’s administration, is also the founder of Citizen International Bank, which later merged with seven other banks to form Spring Bank.

The bank collapsed in 2009 and was taken over by the CBN, which also sanctioned its management for unethical dealings and launched an investigation into its affairs.

Oshiomhole, who represents Edo North in the Senate, said he was uncomfortable with Cardoso’s nomination during his screening at the Senate Committee on Banking, Insurance and Other Financial Institutions.

He questioned Cardoso’s background in commercial banking and his involvement in a failed bank. He also challenged Tinubu’s adherence to the free market principles and his reliance on the market forces to regulate the economy.

“When the West celebrates our free market, no control, and so on, I am always suspicious,” Oshiomhole said.

“The challenge we deal with now is everybody seems to have submitted completely to the so-called market forces and rely on the invisible eyes of Adam Smith to regulate and determine.”

“I am suspicious of people, whose main background comes from commercial banking because central banking is about policy. It is not about marketing, it is not about making a profit. It is about getting monetary policy right. With a clear focus on specific macroeconomic objectives. Listening to the CV, when you have people that have managed banks that have gone into liquidation, that cannot be used as positive in their favour,” he added.

Oshiomhole’s criticism of Tinubu’s ideological leaning is not an isolated case; there is an ongoing rift among APC supporters on social media platforms such as X (formerly known as Twitter). The APC online support group can be divided into four factions: Buharists, BATists, PYO supporters and non-affiliates.

Buharists are loyalists of former President Muhammadu Buhari, who tend to be more welfarist and nationalist in their economic views.

They have opposed some of Tinubu’s policies such as subsidy removal, floating of the Naira, detention of former CBN Governor Godwin Emefiele, concentration of economic team in Southwest, detention of former EFCC boss Abdulrasheed Bawa and others. They have also been vocal in defending Buhari’s legacy and achievements.

BATists are loyalists of Tinubu, who tend to be more liberal and pro-Western in their economic views. They have supported Tinubu’s policies and praised his alignment with the Western establishment and the Bretton Wood institutions. They have also been vocal in attacking Buhari’s critics and opponents.

PYO supporters are loyalists of Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, who tend to be more moderate and pragmatic in their economic views. They have been somewhat neutral in the rift between Buharists and BATists, but they have also expressed their support for Osinbajo’s role and influence in the government.

Non-affiliates are those who do not belong to any of the factions or who switch sides depending on the issue or situation. They tend to be more independent and critical in their views and opinions.

The rift within APC online support group has led to heated debates, arguments and attacks among the different factions. Some popular Buharists like Kayode Ogundamisi, Iyabo Awokoya and others have been somewhat neutral or silent in the ongoing fight. But some Northern Buharists like Abdulaziz Muazu, Mr Explainer—Gaskiya Tafi Kobo, Arewa Daddy and others have been at daggers-drawn with BATists.

On the side of BATists, Dr Toks, Jibril Gawat, an aide to Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu, Legendary Joe, an aide to Speaker Tajudeen Abbas and others have been leading the front in defending Tinubu’s administration.

“I am more than enough to handle you latter-day saints also known as Elite Buharists here. I am not amongst those you spoon-feed or bully to silence. If you continue with your hypocrisy, 4 years will be rough and tough for you on this X app. The only option you have is peace,” Dr Toks posted on X.

Also, several popular figures on X, who somehow got disillusioned with Buhari during his administration have been openly supportive of Tinubu. They include the likes of Omojuwa, Ogbeni Dipo, Iyin and others.

For observers on X, the ongoing fight within the APC supporters could provide a new set of opposition.

The rift within APC online support group reflects the deeper crisis within the party itself, as it struggles to maintain its unity and cohesion amid divergent interests and ideologies. The party may face more challenges as it prepares for the 2025 general elections, where it will have to contend with internal and external opposition.

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Ilesanmi Adekanbi

Ilesanmi Adekanbi, writers and loves writing the story of politics, He is a movie addict. Adekanbi is a Senior Content Creator at Newsflash Nigeria contact me on email: [email protected]

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