By Dayo Johnson

AKURE—leadership of the Social Democratic Party, SDP, yesterday, faulted the statement by its erstwhile National Chairman, Olu Falae, who said those laying claims to the party’s chairman are floating.

The party’s National Secretary, Dr. Olu Agunloye, in a statement titled ‘Chief Olu Falae erred’, said: “This fallacious and malicious misstatement, although primarily directed to distort facts or influence pending court process, is very much unexpected of a revered leader like Falae.

“First, let’s take a closer look at the background of this matter to ensure maximum clarity, as we put the facts bare on the table.

“This is necessary to show the public where Olu Falae, affectionately referred to as Baba, has erred. We shall proceed to put the records straight in the interest of the ever-increasing members of the party nationwide and the public, in general.

“In February 2019, after serving as National Chairman of the Social Democratic Party for over 14 years, Falae abruptly resigned his appointment seven days to the 2019 general elections. He publicly announced this resignation and his retirement from politics.

“However, from his retirement, Falae has proceeded to mislead the public and has attempted to create a faction of SDP in his home state of Ondo.

“He may have finally teamed up with the same Shonibare group that castigated him for misconduct and mismanagement in a still-pending suit at the Federal High Court, Abuja, and with those who openly accused him of impropriety at an Afenifere meeting in Akure to defame the SDP, his former party.

“Accordingly, we wish to present the following points to set the records straight: Supo Shonibare, who claims that Afenifere, the socio-cultural organisation in Yorubaland, had directed him to take over the SDP, is relying on charges of mismanagement against Olu Falae, a Deputy Leader of Afenifere, to justify his (Shonibare’s) case pending at a Federal High Court.

“INEC formally testified at the Federal High Court in the case brought by Shonibare in 2020 and 2021 that the March 2016 Convention, on which Falae based his election, was not covered by INEC.

“This could mean that Falae’s National Chairmanship was actually in the waters from March 2016, struggling to float, but perhaps drowning, until the October 2018 National Convention, which came to his rescue.

“The current actions of Falae to cast aspersions on the Social Democratic Party are completely unwarranted and are strongly condemned. The public is enjoined to disregard the utterances of the Chief,” Agunloye said.

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