By Dirisu Yakubu
ABUJA – With a handful of weeks to the governorship elections, the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, has notified the attention of the Independent National Electoral Commission, election observers and the general public that its gubernatorial candidate in Ogun State is Honourable Ladi Adebutu.
The party therefore called on INEC chairman, Professor Mahmood Yakubu, to insulate the commission from unnecessary controversies by immediately obeying the judgment of the Court of Appeal of December 18, 2018, and without further delay “reflect Ladi Adebutu’s name on the ballot, in the interest of a hitch-free and peaceful election in Ogun state.”
Addressing a press conference at the party’s national secretariat, Abuja yesterday, National Publicity Secretary of the party, Kola Ologbondiyan said its recognized candidate for the polls complied with the laid down guidelines and rules of the party to emerge the flag bearer.
“The PDP states that Honourable Ladi Adebutu’s name was duly and statutorily submitted to INEC after he won the governorship primary conducted by the National Working Committee, NWC, the only body empowered by law to conduct such primaries. The PDP has not substituted his nomination with anybody and such is not in our contemplation.
The statement read: “The PDP charges the INEC Chairman to note that since the ruling of the Court of Appeal validating Honourable Ladi Adebutu as the PDP governorship candidate in Ogun state, no other court, not even the Supreme Court has over turned that extant ruling.
“INEC is therefore compelled to obey the law. It cannot choose for itself which judgment to obey and cannot operate in waiting, anticipation or contemplation of a non-existent consideration in the conduct of the Ogun governorship election.
“In this regard, the PDP urges all Nigerians, particularly the people of Ogun state, to completely disregard certain individuals, including Senator Kashamu Buruji, who has been making misleading comments and trying to create an impression that the Supreme Court has made a pronouncement on the issue.
“Moreover, the PDP holds that Senator Buruji cannot under any imagination be the governorship candidate of the PDP in Ogun state. He is not a member of our party; he did not participate in our Ogun state governorship primary and has no connection whatsoever in our governorship nomination process at any level for that matter.
“INEC cannot go to the streets to pick a candidate for our party. It must therefore, in compliance with the extant judgment of the Court of Appeal, immediately reflect Ladi Adebutu’s name in the ballot, otherwise Nigerians will have no other option than to conclude that Professor Mahmood Yakubu has become compromised to cause confusion and anarchy in Ogun state.
A Federal High Court sitting in Abuja had recently ruled in favour of Senator Kashamu, declaring him as the governorship candidate of the party. However, PDP has continuously insisted that lamaker representing Ogun East has been expelled from its fold.