Crisis tears PDP apart as court reinstates Secondus as national chairman …Governors back Akinwonmi as Ag. chair

By Daniel Kokoricha

A Kebbi State High Court has ordered Prince Uche Secondus to return to his position as the National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

A vacation Judge, Justice Nusrat Umar, gave the order in a suit brought before her in Birinin Kebbi, the state capital.

In the case, cited as KB/AC/M. 170/2021, Justice Umar said she was satisfied after reading the affidavit of the respondents.

She said it was necessary to issue an interim order on the purported suspension of Prince Secondus pending the determination of the case.

The order reads as follows: “An order of this Honourable court granting leave to the first respondent (Uche Secondus) to continue exercising all the constitutional powers of the office of Chairman of PDP (second defendant) as enshrined in both 1999 Constitution of Nigeria as amended and the Peoples Democratic Party’s constitution pending the hearing and final determination of applicant’s motion on notice.

“Any further order(s) as this Honourable Court may deem fit to make in the circumstances.”

Three concerned members of the party, Yahaya Usman, Abubakar Mohammed and Bashar Suleman are the claimants/Applicant in the case while Prince Secondus and the PDP are the defendants/Respondents.

This came just as party accepted the Deputy National Chairman (South), Yemi Akinwonmi, as acting national chairman.

Its spokesman, Kola Ologbondiyan, stated this, when he briefed journalists on the outcome of National Working Committee ( NWC) held yesterday in Abuja.

Akinwonmi and the Deputy National Chairman (North), Suleiman Nazif, had clashed on Tuesday over who is in charge following an order by a Rivers State High Court, that restrained Uche Secondus from functioning as national chairman.

However, Ologbondiyan said at the meeting, members of the NWC unanimously agreed that Akinwonmi should take over the affairs of the party in acting capacity, in line with the constitution of the party.

He added that the NWC also resolved that a meeting of the National Executive Committee (NEC) should hold on Saturday to kickstart plans for the party’s national convention in October.

“It  is interesting for Nigerians to know that this is in line with the provisions of our constitution, the party is fully back on stream. We are sailing smoothly and I will also want to let you know that as you can witness our Board of Trustees meeting is going on as we speak.

“Tomorrow, we are going to have a caucus meeting,  in preparation for the National Executive Committee (NEC) meeting, which will hold on Saturday.”

Similarly, Akinwonmi, while speaking at a meeting of the BoT, said all the NWC members have resolved to work together. The acting chairman reaffirmed that the PDP national convention to elect new NWC members would hold in October.

The  BoT chairman, Senator Walid Jibrin, has confirmed that NEC would meet tomorrow to consider the composition of the party’s zoning and convention planning committees.

He said  the NWC  is expected to submit the proposed list for the two committees to the board for its imput, before they are presented to NEC for ratification.

Meanwhile, PDP Governors Forum has expressed support for Yemi Akinwonmi as acting national chairman.

Its chairman, Governor Aminu Tambuwal of Sokoto State, told journalists, after a meeting of the forum, in Abuja, that the opposition governors align themselves with the decision of stakeholders that Akinwonmi should take over the affairs of PDP.

Tambuwal added that the governors were also in support of the proposal for the conduct of    the party’s national convention, where a new set of officers will be elected into the National Working Committee (NWC), in October.

“We have met with Elder Akinwonmi and Senator  Sulaiman Nazif and they both told us that they have resolved their differences and that they have agreed to work together in the interest of the party. Since we have no problems with that, we I agreed to go with their decision.”

He said the governors would be part of the PDP National Executive Committee (NEC) meeting , tomorrow, where issues relating to the composition of the zoning and convention committees will be addressed.