…Dismisses allegations of interference against Secondus
…AS NWC receives a report on Lagos Exco
By Dirisu Yakubu
ABUJA- Ahead of the Bayelsa and Kogi governorship elections slated for November 16, the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Tuesday, cautioned Vice President Yemi Osinbajo not to rely on the Social Investment Scheme, tradermoni with the hope of wooing the electorate to win the states for the All Progressives Congress, APC.
The party which stated this at a parley with newsmen said the two states remained PDP strongholds, adding that no amount of financial inducements would change the people’s resolve to rally behind the party once again.
At a media interaction with journalists at the PDP national secretariat yesterday, National Publicity Secretary of the party, Kola Ologbondiyan said it was time for Kogi state governor, Yahaya Bello to start preparing his handover notes, stressing that his inability to make the state’s civil servants happy in the past four years is enough for him to leave.
He said: “We want to advise the federal government, Vice President Osinbajo and the All Progressives Congress, APC, not to waste Nigeria’s tradermoni in Bayelsa and Kogi states in the guise of scouting for votes.
“The states are traditionally the stronghold of the PDP. We all know what happened and how the APC came to assume power in Kogi. They (APC) are free to participate because we run a democracy. We, however, advise Governor Yahaya Bello to start preparing his handover notes because we will remove him as a united party. The people of Kogi state have suffered enough. They have seen the looting of the treasury; they have hungered and are now ready to vote out Bello and the APC.”
Still, on the North-Central state, the publicity scribe said the people have a history of changing their governor’s, adding that the loss of the election by the late former governor of the state, the late Abubakar Audu, was due to his inability to pay salaries of the state’s workers.
On allegations of interfering in the choice of Bayelsa state governorship candidate levied against the party’s national chairman, Ologbondiyan said it was not in the character of Secondus to do so.
“It is absolutely misplaced for anybody or any group of people, to come together and say that the party has taken a decision and also make allegations that the national chairman had played a role in whatever form in that process. The process is on and the party has not reached any conclusion in respect to issues raised concerning those elected into office, either as chairman or councillors in Bayelsa state. The party is still holding meetings with respect to this.
“We have constituted three-man committees to conduct the ad-hoc delegates’ election. And I can clearly say that the governors who chaired those committees, to the best of their ability were wonderful in their performance.
“When there are grievances, there are channels that members and aspirants can explore. We have the appeal committee at every level of our internal democracy. So if there are issues or grievances, the aspirants or members should recourse to the appeal panels rather than coming out to make frivolous allegations,” he added.
He called on the chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission, Professor Mahmood Yakubu to use the forthcoming governorship elections to redeem himself saying, “Professor Mahmood Yakubu has the ample opportunity to clean his image with Bayelsa and Kogi elections. We expect him as a party to conduct an election that will be clean, clear, and credible and that will be generally acceptable to the majority of Nigerians. Anything outside of that, he will not only diminish himself as INEC chairman but that institution as well.”
Meanwhile, the ad-hoc committee set up by the National Working Committee of the PDP has submitted its report to the party. Chaired by Senator Ben Obi, the committee which also has members Senator Biodun Olujimi, Eddy Olafeso among others, thanked the NWC for the opportunity given it to serve.
Senator Obi enumerated the factors that cost the party the state in the last general election to include the lack of unity following what he called the unilateral dismissal of elected local government chairmen by the acting Lagos state chairman, Dr Adegbola Dominic.
Receiving the report, Secondus thanked the committee and promised to on behalf of the NWC to look at the recommendations with a view to implementing the same in the interest of the party.