Editor's note: The president of the National Committee of Yoruba Youth (NCCY), Comrade Oladimeji Odeyemi, writes on the reconciliation committee set up by President Muhammadu Buhari and headed by the national leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Asiwaju Bola Tinubu.
Like John the Baptist, Comrade Timi Frank has been a lonely voice in the wilderness of the governing All Progressives Congress (APC) since the party came into power, calling the attention of President Muhammadu Buhari and other national leaders to some of the injustices he had seen even before they are now finally out of bags.
One might be forced to ask whether Comrade Frank is a prophet? If he is, the saying that a prophet has no honour in his home might have played out against the deputy publicity secretary of the APC, having fought for the dethronement of his kinsman from Bayelsa, Former President Goodluck Jonathan and meaningfully contributed to the enthronement of the APC government.
Before the 2015 general elections, the People Democratic Party (PDP) was strongly in charge of the south-south, the home of the then president. For this reason, not many sons and daughters of south-south could boldly speak out against the government of Jonathan, but Timi Frank did. On principle, he fought the Jonathan's government to standstill. He exposed a lot of injustices against the nation at the detriment of his brother (Jonathan). Frank risked his life to ensure that APC became acceptable in a region that was predominantly known as stronghold of PDP.
APC in 2015 emerged the governing party but that marked the beginning of Timi Frank's persecution. The Bayelsa-born young politician was one of those who strongly supported the emergence of Senator Bukola Saraki as Senate President and Honourable Yakubu Dogara as Speaker, even when the party ejected them. Today, both Saraki and Dogara are making the nation proud and Nigerians are praising them.
The most clearly done injustice against Timi Frank, was when he was denied the right to occupy the position of the national publicity secretary of the party, when Lai Mohammad, who he was deputising got a appointment as the minister of information. Instead of allowing the only young man in the National Working Committee of APC to rise, forces against the truths Frank has been talking about manipulated the party's law and illegally brought Bolaji Abdullahi, as a result of a kangaroo zonal convention.
The young man cried, shouted and even took the matter to court but nobody listened to him. He wrote an open letter to President Muhammadu Buhari, it was ignored. He called on national leaders to rescue the party but the responses were not forthcoming.
When the division within the APC started, Frank was the first to raise alarm but the party led by Chief Oyegun, denied the existence of any cracks in the party.
In October 2016, Frank had written an open letter to the president warning about the crises rocking the party, warning that if nothing was done to assuage the feelings of the aggrieved persons, APC could pay for it.
In one of the letters addressed to President Buhari, Comrade Frank warned that if nothing is done urgently, ''the pot left on the fire will definitely burn."
In another occassion, the APC chieftain addressed a press conference to urge President Buhari to immediately direct Chief Odigie-Oyegun to summon an emergency NEC/BOT/Caucus meetings which he said "will enable the party leadership find a lasting solution to all pending issues," but the call was ignored.
Instead of being commended for speaking the truth, Timi Frank's zonal vice chairman, Hillard Eta, was directed to pronounce his suspension, a move that could not be justifyiedbefore any right thinking person.
Frank was declared ‘suspended’ illegally by the south-south zone of his party for granting press interviews in which he was alleged to have made some disparaging comments about the national chairman.
But instead of feeling intimidated, the outspoken young man responded by damning the APC leadership and fighting for his right.
This drama and many more, might have come and gone but the prophecies of Timi Frank about the future of APC has daily come to pass. He has never allowed himself to be caged, intimidated or silenced despite all the injustices done to him.
As the national leader of the APC commences the move to reconcile all the aggrieved members of the party, as directed by President Muhammadu Buhari, it is incumbent to reach out to Timi Frank, who has been wronged, trampled upon and cheated, if the gods of reconciliation will make manifest in Tinubu's assignment.
In fact, there is nothing wrong if the former Lagos state governor, seek to hear from Timi Frank, on how to go about his assignment because the gods of justice does not discriminate against age, colour or position of any man.
Therefore, ignoring Timi Frank, like in the past might not be at the interest of the party if truly Tinubu-led reconciliation panel mean well for APC.
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