By Samuel Oyadongha
Yenagoaâ€”The non-recognition of the ruling Peoples Democratic Party, PDP,Â congresses in Bayelsa State by the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, has led to fresh controversy in the state, as the two factional leaders are insisting they areÂ in charge of the party until a fresh congress is conducted.
INEC said the congresses held in five states of the federation, Bayelsa State inclusive, were not conducted in line with the PDP constitution, and, as a result, were not acceptable.
INEC Secretary, Abdulahi Kaugama, said the congresses were not acceptable to the Commission as they did not follow due process,Â laid down guidelines and PDP constitution.
However, this development has heightened the internal wrangling within the party, as factions led by Chief Fred Agbedi and Chief Rufus Abadi are laying claim to the leadership of the party.
Chief Agbedi in an interview, described the decision of INEC as a welcome development, stressing that they had been vindicated.
â€œOur four-year tenure as the leadership of the party has not expired. I am still the chairman of the party as the Abadi-led executive council is not recognised by the constitution.
This has been our position, that the congress that brought the Rufus Abadi-led executive council was characterized with fraud and it was illegal,â€ he said.
But Chief Abadi maintained that he remained the chairman of the party until a new congress is held,Â saying, â€œuntil the new congress is held, I remain the chairman of the party.â€