BY DAYO JOHNSON
AGGRIEVED members of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, in Ondo State yesterday invaded the party’s secretariat and sacked the workers and members of the State Working Committee, SWC, to protest the controversial ministerial list and other nominees from the state drawn by the party leaders.
The list had in the last one week tore the party apart with some chieftains, arguing that some nominees were been recycled and ought not to be included.
Two separate meetings, it was learnt, were held at Ijapo area of Akure and Ondo by aggrieved chieftains of the party where decisions were taken to reject the list of nominees sent by “some cabals within the party.”
The aggrieved party members who invaded the secretariat located along Oyemekun road as early as 8am beat up the party’s Chief Accountant, Dele Oluyole and another party member, Tunde Tokunbo met at the secretariat.
However, the party’s Publicity Secretary, Chief Adeyemi Adedipe was allowed to walk away from the secretariat unhurt by the aggrieved party members.
The party chairman, Dr Tayo Dairo and others SWC members that were to hold a meeting to lift the suspension of the Defence Minister, Adetokunbo Kayode, SAN, had not arrived when the aggrieved members invaded the secretariat.
Investigation revealed that the aggrieved members had targeted some women group across the state that were to endorse the list of nominees forwarded to the National Secretariat of the party that morning.
The women led by Mrs Funmilola Oluwadare who later met to endorse the list said the names of the two women included in the list were inadequate, adding however, that they are in full support of the list drawn by the state chapter of the party.
However, the timely intervention of policemen saved the day as the aggrieved members chanting anti-Dairo armed with cudgel, including cutlasses damaged moveable properties in the secretariat.
It was gathered that doors to the entrance of the building and those of the inner offices were forced open while the locks changed to new ones brought by them.
For about one hour the protesters took over the secretariat until the leadership of the party invited the police who dislodged them.
It was gathered that the protesting members and others across the 18 council areas of the state were against the list of nominees forwarded to Abuja by the party leaders.
Names included in the controversial list include that of the state Chiarman of the party Dr Dairo, former governor, Dr. Olusegun Agagu, his former Deputy, Omolade Oluwateru, Senator Bode Olajumoke, billionaire businessman, Jimoh Ibrahim, Special Adviser on Niger Delta Matters Kingsley Kuku, Febi Adeyemi, Foluke Akinjoko, Gbenga Elegbelye and the National Legal Adviser of the party Chief Olusola Oke.
Reacting to the sacking of the SWC by the aggrieved members of the party, its Director of Publicity, Ayo Fadaka described the invasion as a normal occurrence in politics.
Fadaka added that “sometimes such conflicts may arise from ephemeral issues but importantly, it is imperative to state that what happened is already being addressed by the party leadership with a view to calm frayed nerves and promote unity in the party.”