•Say party lost Obi, Kwankwaso under Ayu
By John Alechenu, Abuja
The last is yet to be heard about the alleged financial scandal rocking the National Working Committee of the Peoples Democratic Party.
Some party chieftains on Friday renewed calls for the resignation of the National Chairman, Sen. Iyorchia Ayu.
Two chieftains of the party, Senator Olaka Nwogu and Mohammed Jamo, who appeared on the Channels Television political Programme, Politics Today, noted that the scandal over the suspicious payment of sums ranging from N26-N35 million into the personal accounts of NWC members as housing allowance was sufficient grounds for him to step down. About N122 million was gifted out to members who returned the money to party coffers, saying that they did not apply for it.
Olaka said, “I’m outraged and embarrassed at this time, my party is not the issue, the National Chairman is the issue, the NWC is the issue. Governor Nyesom Wike had his media chat and said the N14bn of the party’s funds is the target, that it is the reason for the dogged determination of Ayu to remain in office.
“Now, what is coming out is that some members of the NWC are seeing less than N1bn of that money just at a time they are beginning to ask questions they are receiving alerts.
“They are saying, at no time did the NWC sit to decide that people should be paid that amount. Whether it is supposed to be a loan, they didn’t apply for it, if it was supposed to be housing they have houses in Abuja. Ayu should apologize to the party and Nigerians and resign. “
He noted that the approval limit for the National Chairman of the PDP was N10m while that of the Secretary was N5 million, arguing that anything beyond that ought to have gone to the National Executive Committee.
We lost Obi, and Kwankwaso because of Ayu
Speaking in a similar vein, Jamo challenged the party leadership to come clean by providing evidence of the meeting as well as vouchers approving the payment of the funds in contention to NWC members.
He argued that the PDP could not be talking about fighting corruption at the national level without fighting purging itself.
Jamo also blamed Ayu’s “poor leadership” for the exit of the Presidential candidate of the Labour Party, Peter Obi and that of the New Nigeria People’s Party, Rabiu Kwankwaso.
He said, “The PDP is the main opposition party, the two other political parties were a creation of the incapacity of Mr Iyorchia Ayu as Chairman of PDP.
“Under his watch, we lost Peter Obi, under his watch, we lost Kwankwaso. If he had done well and Obi and Kwankwaso were in PDP, the (2023) election would have been a walkover for us. Ayu should go.”