Former members of the National Assembly from the South-West geopolitical zone on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) have urged members of the party to shelve their agitation for the resignation of the National Chairman, Sen. Iyorchia Ayu. The Interim Coordinator of the PDP South-West Forum of Former Parliamentarians, Yemi Arokodare, made the call in a statement in Abuja on Sunday.
”Party members across the region should shelve all personal interests and work tirelessly for the success of the party in 2023 general elections, in spite the lingering leadership crisis.
“We wish to appeal to all the South West Party Leaders to tarry a bit on their request that the PDP National Chairman, Ayu should step down as part of measures to address the lingering crisis in the party.
“This may further cause imbalance and instability within the party, if allowed to linger.
” Arokodare said that the group acknowledged the concerns raised by all the party Leaders and other stakeholders on the need to ensure fairness and equity in the party structure.
He said that the former lawmakers also noted the merit for inclusiveness of South West within the party, but urged that the demand should come after the general elections.
“Beyond this, we feel very strongly that, what is important now is to work like we did in Osun State and win the next Presidential, National Assembly, Gubernatorial and State Assembly elections, our concerns for now should be how to win the coming polls, then, other things will follow.
” Arokodare commended the party’s Presidential Candidate, Atiku Abubakar for his consultation visit to the South West region as part of the ongoing nationwide consultations in preparation for the 2023 general elections.
He also commended, Gov. Seyi Makinde of Oyo State for hosting the meeting during the visit of Zone by the Abubakar which he described as unprecedented .
He commended PDP leaders and members for their large turn out to attend the consultation meeting where they discussed issues and views.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that on Sept. 8, the National Executive Council of the PDP passed a vote-of-confidence in Ayu, suggesting that the party chairman will not be stepping down any time soon.
A motion for the vote of confidence in the PDP’s National Working Committee (NWC) was moved by the Minority Leader of the House of Representatives, Ndudi Elumelu at the BoT and NEC meeting which held in Abuja on Thursday.
The vote was supported by a NEC member from Kwara and presided over by the acting chairman of the PDP BoT, Adolphus Wabara.
There have been several calls by the southern caucus of the PDP for Ayu to step down for a southerner, however, with the vote of confidence, it is almost certain that Ayu will not be vacating the seat.
The meeting was witnessed by just four of its 11 governors including Aminu Tambuwal (Sokoto), Darius Iskaku (Taraba), Duoye Diri (Bayelsa) and Bala Mohammed (Bauchi) as well as the Deputy governors of Benue and Adamawa.
The North Central Zonal Chairman of the ruling APC, Alhaji Mu’azu Bawa, has cautioned party members against indulging in anti-party activities as the 2023 general elections approach.
Bawa issued the caution on Friday in Jos at a one day meeting with APC hierarchy in Plateau to strengthen the party internal democracy.
The zonal chairman said said the party developed a method of identifying and dealing with members who indulged in anti-Party activities.
He advised those contemplating such to desist forthwith, or have themselves to blame.
Bawa urged APC members to work for the success of the party for the good of everyone.
“The visit is an assignment given to us by the National Working Committee (NWC) of the APC to go round the states in the North Central zone to interact and hear from the party members.
“The is necessary because we must work in unison and all hands must be on deck to ensure that APC emerges victorious in 2023 general elections.
“Plateau is the home for APC, taking into consideration the appointment of Gov. Simon Lalong as the Director General of Campaign Organization.
“We are ready to support him and make sure that the North Central zone produces a large chunk of votes for APC in 2023.“Therefore, we have come to hear from you as critical stakeholders of the party and bridge the gap of challenges within the party before the ban on campaign is lifted,” he said.
Plateau APC Chairman, Chief Rufus Bature, stated that the North Central zone remained the melting point of politics as far as Nigeria was concerned.
Bature told his guests that APC in Plateau had already strategised and put all machinery in motion to deliver all its candidates, beginning with the presidency to members of the state assembly.
He charged party loyalists to discard political shenanigans of the opposition parties and focus on issues based campaign to canvass for votes for the APC.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that all stakeholders, including women and youth leaders, were given opportunity to make their contributions during the interactive session.
A Federal High Court, Abuja, on Thursday, ordered the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to accept and publish Godswill Akpabio’s name as the candidate of the All Progressive Congress (APC) for the 2023 Akwa Ibom Senatorial District election.
Delivering judgment, Justice Emeka Nwite, held that INEC’s refusal to accept and publish the name of Akpabio, former Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, was in contradiction with the law, having received the name from the APC as its valid candidate.
Nwite, who said that the electoral umpire acted illegally, said the commission lacked power to have disqualified the 2nd plaintiff (Akpabio).
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that in the suit filed before Nwite marked: 10112022, the APC and Akpabio are 1st and 2nd plaintiffs respectively while INEC is the sole defendant.
Justice Nwite found that Akpabio was validly nominated as the Akwa Ibom North West Senatorial District candidate of the APC from the primary conducted by the party’s National Working Committee (NWC) on June 9, 2022.The judge declared that INEC “is bound by the provisions of Section 29 (3) of the Electoral Act to publish only the personal particulars of the candidate of the first plaintiff for the Akwa Iborn North West Senatorial District elections in the person of the second plaintiff (Akpabio) as received from the first plaintiff.
The judge also declared that INEC cannot publish any other name or particulars of any other candidate as candidate of the APC for the senatorial district elections, “except as nominated, submitted and received from the first plaintiff (APC).
”Justice Nwite rejected INEC’s claimed that it declined to monitor the primary conducted by APC on June 9, which produced Akpabio as the party’s candidate, because it had monitored the one conducted on May 27.The judge faulted INEC for electing to monitor the May 27 primary conducted by an illegal faction of the party led by Augustine Ekanem as against the June 9 primary conducted by the APC NWC, an organ of the party authorised by law to conduct such primaries.
Justice Nwite said: “I am of the view that the defendant (INEC) cannot choose and impose a candidate on a political party.
“The fact that INEC chose to monitor an illegal primary and produced a report, cannot give it legitimacy.
“INEC cannot unilaterally pronounced a primary conducted by a political party or a candidate submitted to it as invalid, without a valid court order,” the judge said.
He held that there is no law empowering INEC to refuse to accept and publish the name of a candidate sent to it by a political party without an order of court.
“The consequences of the defendant’s (INEC’s) failure to monitor the legal primary conducted on June 9 by the first plaintiff, cannot be visited on the plaintiffs.
“The defendant lacks the vires to usurp or assume the power of the court to disqualify a candidate,” he said.
The judge noted that it was not in doubt that there were two (2) primaries conducted by the APC for the Akwa Ibom North West Senatorial District; one by the NWC of the APC, and the other by Augustine Ekanem, an illegal factional chairman of the APC in the state.
He also said that INEC accepted correspondence from the said Augustine Ekanem an impostor and monitored an illegal primaries not conducted by the NWC of APC.
He further said that despite being invited and notified, INEC chose not to attend the validly conducted primary of the APC for the state’s senatorial district where Akpabio was elected and nominated, but decided to term the primary illegal.
Nwite then ordered INEC to publish the name and particulars of Akpabio as the candidate of the APC for the Akwa Iborn North West Senatorial District in the 2023 general elections as nominated and submitted to it by the party.
“I hereby declared that the defendant (INEC) publish the name of the 2nd plaintifff as the authentic candidate,” he ruled.
NAN reports that INEC had recently cautioned the APC against its choice of candidate for the Akwa Ibom North-west Senatorial seat.
The commission said the name of the ex-minister submitted by the party remained invalid until the party followed due process.
Udom Ekpoudom had emerged as the party’s candidate in the earlier primary supervised by INEC officials in the constituency.
However, the APC submitted the name of Akpabio in his place, having won the second primary conducted by the party.
INEC spokesperson, Festus Okoye, in an interview however, said that the commission rejected Akpabio’s name because he was not the validly nominated candidate for the senatorial district.
The All Progressives Congress (APC) Reconciliation Committee for Abia Chapter has called on aggrieved party’s members to sheath their swords and allow peace to reign in the state.
The Chairman of the committee, Sen. Chris Adighije, made the appeal on Wednesday while speaking with newsmen in Abuja.
The reconciliation committee was inaugurated by the APC National Working Committee (NWC) on Aug. 4, with the mandate to reconcile the aggrieved stakeholders in the state.
Adighije, who said that the committee was engaging many stakeholders, said that its report would be submitted to the national leadership of the party at the end of this month.
According to him, all shades of opinion were considered in the committee’s report to the extent that the committee is also recommending punitive measures against any recalcitrant member.
“Let me appeal to stakeholders and members of APC in the state to sheath their swords and allow peace to reign.
“As stakeholders, they can only be relevant in the party at the National level when they are able to deliver their state,’’ committee chairman said.
According to him, the reconciliation exercise which is still ongoing and aimed at strengthening the party to bring about inclusion and unity.
“There is no way APC will win at the national level when it loses at the state.
It would be assumed that the Abia people did not contribute much to the victory at the national level,’’ he said.
Adighije, who is the Pro-Chancellor and Chairman Governing Council, Federal University, Lokoja in Kogi, recalled that the committee met immediately after its inauguration to access the task ahead of it.
“The committee has so far engaged some critical stakeholders of the party in the state, among who are the federal appointees.
“We made them to know that there is no way APC would be reconciled in Abia without them.
They are key to the reconciliation efforts of the committee and some of them were drafted to be part of the committee.
“One good thing about the meetings so far is that all of them said they were not leaving the party; that they don’t have any reason to leave the party even though there are issues they feel should be addressed.
“Such are issues of party structure and all that and l assured them that the committee would also engage the party at the state working committee to see how their concerns could also be addressed.
“Away from that the committee has also engaged some stakeholders individually all in the effort to make sure that everyone is on the same page.
“The good news also is that the State Working Committee has agreed to work out the template which it would give to the committee to enable us see how we can achieve some level of inclusiveness in the party structure,” he added.
When asked to speak on the fate of the party in the forthcoming 2023 general elections, the chairman said, “We are trusting God that this exercise will be productive sufficiently.
“If that happens, it would enrich our party and brighten our chances in the next election.
’’ He, however, called on the party leadership and the APC Presidential Campaign Council (PCC) to consider stakeholders in the state in the final list of the party’s campaign Council.
Members of the committee include: Sen. Adighije as Chairman, Deputy Chief Whip of the House of Representatives, Rep. Nkeiruka Onyejeocha – Secretary, and Minister of State for Science, Technology and Innovation, Chief Henry Ikechukwu, Others are: former Minister of Labour and Productivity, Dr Emeka Wogu, APC National Welfare Secretary, Sir F.
N. Nwosu and APC Governorship Candidate in Abia State, High Chief Ikechi Emenike, Hon. Emeka Atuma and Hon. Martins Azubuike,
The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has adopted a grassroots structure for its electioneering campaign for the 2023 general election.
The PDP National Publicity Secretary, Mr Debo Ologunagba said this at the end of the meeting of the National Working Committee (NWC) of the party in Abuja.
Ologunagba said that the party also approved a unified campaign structure for its campaign across the country, for the general election.
He said that the NWC at its 97th meeting deliberated on issues of urgent national importance as well as the preparations for the 2023 general election.
“NEC also approved the structure for campaign councils at the states, local government, ward and unit levels, while it unanimously empower the NWC to modify and adjust the structures of the campaign councils as and when the need arises.
“NEC received and approved the proposed structure for Zonal Reconciliation Committees to be set up to ensure that our party presents a common front ahead of the 2023 general elections.
“NEC also received and approved the composition of the Manifesto Review Committee to review the manifesto of the PDP ahead of the 2023 general election,”he said.
The national publicity secretary, said that NEC also charged party faithful to remain united in rallying toward the success of the PDP at the 2023 general election.
He said that NEC also decried the current state of the nation’s economy and the prolonged strike by the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) among others.
Ologunagba added that the NEC unanimously passed a vote of confidence on the party National Working Committee (NWC) led by Sen. Iyorchia Ayu for effectively managing the affairs of the party.
He said that NEC also endorsed the resignation of the Chairman of the PDP Board of Trustees, Sen. Walid Jibrin and accepted the nomination of Sen. Adolphus Wabara, the Secretary of the BoT, as the acting Chairman.
“NEC thanked Jibrin for his loyalty and commitment toward the unity, stability and success of the Party at all times and urged him not to relent in his service to the Party and the Nation at large,”he said.
Ologunagba said that NEC congratulated the party as well as the Osun Governor-Elect, Sen. Ademola Adeleke for PDP victory at the July 16 governorship election.
“NEC unanimously ratified the list of candidates of the party as submitted to the INEC by the NWC,” he said
The National Caucus of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) says it is set with its 2023 National Presidential Campaign Council list.
The party National Publicity Secretary, Debo Ologunagba, disclosed this while briefing newsmen on Wednesday night after the party National Caucus meeting in Abuja.
Ologunagba , who did not disclose details of the list, added that the party was ready for it Board of Trustees (BoT) and the National Executive Council meetings scheduled for Thursday, where the list would be approved.
“The party is set to go and ready for the elections.
We are ready for the Thursday BoT meeting and caucus meeting.
“All issues were resolved and we are happy as a party and we are ready to go because the mission to rescue and rebuild our country is going on in line with the plan of our party.
“We are set to go.
We are ready.
The organs of the party are working.
You can see that PDP is truly a party.
“Every decision of this party is in line with the constitution of our party.
We go through all processes through the organs of the part in line with all the regulations and the constitution, as provided for.
“We are doing well.
We are happy.
We are smiling.
We are fine and we are set to go.
“Tomorrow, we will be going on with our BoT and NEC meeting, the campaign council is ready, in terms of the structures and we are ready to go,” Ologunagba said.
When asked why many of the party governors were absent at the meeting, Ologunagba said many were on holiday outside the country but were fully represented by their deputies.
Asked who would be Chairman of the Campaign Council, the party Presidential Candidate, Atiku Abubakar, quickly said “it will be made available after the Thursday meeting.
” Ologunagba, earlier in a chat with journalists, had denied a hint that members of the National Working Committee (NWC) asked Ayu to resign his chairmanship position at the NWC meeting held last Thursday.
Ologunagba said nothing of such was discussed at the NWC meeting, saying issues discussed were majorly the agenda of the NEC meeting, composition of the National Campaign Council, among others.
The caucus meeting was attended by PDP National Chairman, Sen. Iyorchia Ayu, Gov. Aminu Tambuwal of Sokoto State, his Bauchi and Bayelsa counterparts, Governors Bala Mohammed and Duoye Diri, respectively.
Others were the Chairman and Secretary of the PDP Board of Trustees, Senators Walid Jibrin and Adolphus Wagbara, respectively; Deputy Governors of Edo and Benue, Philip Shuaibu and Benson Abounu respectively.
As the end of the meeting, some protesters converged outside the gate of the Akwa-Ibom Governor’s Lodge chanting “Ayu must go”; “We want justice in PDP” and “PDP National Chairman – North”.
Others read: “PDP BoT Chairman-North”; “PDP Presidential Candidate-North”,; PDP Governors Forum Chairman – North” and “Ayu respect yourself”.
Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, the Presidential Candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) will meet with the National Working Committee (NWC) of the party on Wednesday in Abuja, an official has said.
The official who spoke on an anonymous condition told the News Agency of Nigeria in Abuja that the meeting was expected to prepare ground for successful take-off of the presidential campaign of the party.
He said that the meeting would provide an opportunity for Tinubu and his running mate, Kashim Shettima, to discuss their strategies with the party’s leadership ahead of the campaign.
Meanwhile, security has been beefed up at the APC National Secretariat in Abuja, ahead of the meeting.
African Democratic Congress (ADC) has appointed Dr Mani Ahmed, a presidential aspirant in 2015, as Chairman of the party’s Board of Trustees (BoT).
This is contained in statement jointly signed by the party’s National Chairman, Chief Ralph Nwosu and National Secretary, Alhaji Said Abdullahi on Wednesday in Abuja.
It said Ahmed emerged the party’s BoT chairman at the end of an emergency National Working Committee (NWC) and critical stakeholders’ meeting on Tuesday.
It said that the party also suspended Alhaji Ibrahim Manzo, former National Vice Chairman, North-East and 17 state chairmen for anti-party activities and utterances aimed at bringing the ADC to disrepute.
According to the statement, activities of the suspended officials contravene Article 15 of the party’s constitution.
“The party’s former chairman in Abia was expelled; replacement for the suspended state chairmen will be announced in due course,” it added.
The statement urged all ADC executives at ward, local government and state level to continue structuring the party at the grassroots for campaign take-off.
It encouraged the party candidates at all levels, not to be distracted by the activities of a few members, but to remain focused ahead of 2023 general elections.
Major stakeholders of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Enugu State have said that the party is not ready for the 2023 general elections in the state.
Arising from a stakeholders meeting on Sunday in Enugu, the party chieftains reiterated their resolve to institute a caretaker committee to oversee the activities of the party leading to the elections.
Former Senate President, Sen. Ken Nnamani, said that the party did not seem attractive to prospective members due to the leadership style of its chairman, Mr Ugochukwu Agballa.
Nnamani said that the party chairman had neglected party stalwarts and was through his conducts leading the party to a disastrous end.
“We feel the party is not going the way it should go.
There is danger ahead as people are leaving our party.
“For only one person to contest our party’s gubernatorial primaries shows we are not attractive and most of our flag bearers are those most unlikely to win elections.
“Candidates of other parties have been coming to us to appeal for our support but ours are not coming,” he said.
Nnamani said that the chieftains would do everything possible to rescue the party and save it from implosion, adding that a fractured party would not do well in elections.
Also, former state governor, Mr Sullivan Chime, described Agballa as an “impostor” bent on destroying the party in the state.
Chime said that he never supported the candidacy of Agballah as party chairman due to his antecedents.
According to him, it is strange that I do not know any candidate from House of Assembly to Senate from my constituency and zone.
“I do not know who our candidates are.
For the governorship candidate, I am hearing it as a rumour though it happens to be the person I knew from a distance.
“The last time I saw him was during Gov. Chimaroke Nnamani’s administration.
I have not seen him since he emerged,” he said.
The former governor said that election was about electing those that would be useful to the party and the people.
“I do not think I will be part of any arrangement to vote for someone I do not know.
It is very clear to me how our presidential candidate emerged and no one said he was imposed on us.
“Therefore, I have a duty to support him.
I will not just vote for him but will talk about him when I have the opportunity but I do not know the others and how they emerged,” Chime said.
Another party chieftain, Gbazuagu Nweke, said that they had already made their intentions known to the National Working Committee (NWC) of the party.
“We are here to brief you on what we have done.
Those who knew Agballa were opposed to him because they knew his conduct.
“Our leaders by accepting him made every efforts with good intentions but he started a systematic dismantling of every known structure after his emergence.
“We cannot leave the party for Agballa.
Our position is that he must go.
He has squandered the opportunity given to him.
He has no respect and character,” Nweke said.
Also, the Ward Chairman of Ward, Mr Ferdinand Aguma, said that they had suspended and expelled Agballah from the party over gross misconduct and falsification of party membership card.
Aguma said that the ward executives received a petition against the embattled chairman.
“We set up a disciplinary committee to investigate the petition.
Letters were sent to him but he did not honour the invitation.
“We eventually found out that he did not resign his membership of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) before his romance with the APC.
As we speak, Agballah is not registered with us,” he said.
Aguma said that they acted in accordance with the APC Constitution in suspending and expelling Agballah.
In his reaction, Agballah said that the party chieftains did not follow due process in their attempt to remove him, adding that there were laid down procedures to remove a sitting party chairman.
Also, the gubernatorial candidate of the party in the state, Mr Uche Nnaji, said that those that were opposed to the chairman were after the election fund acrueable to the state.
Nnaji said that he would advise the national leadership of the party not to send any campaign and election money to the state.
The governorship candidate said that they would sponsor and fund the campaigns and ask for refund, thereafter.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that among APC chieftains that attended the meeting included Minister of Foreign Affairs, Geoffrey Onyeama, the South-East representative in the Police Service Commission, Chief Onyemuche Nnamani.
Others were former Speaker of the State Assembly, Chief Eugene Odoh, Messers Vin-Marthins Ilo, Adolphus Udeh, Joe Mmamel, Iyke Ugwuegede and Adolphus Udeh.
Dumebi Kachikwu, embattled African Democratic Congress (ADC) presidential candidate, says he remain the party’s candidate for 2023 election, in spite of his purported suspension by the National Working Committee (NWC).
Kachikwu said this in a statement on Saturday in Abuja.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the ADC NWC, headed by Chief Ralph Nwosu had last Friday suspended him from the party for alleged anti-party activities.
But Kachikwu blamed the problem on the chairman of the party, Chief Ralph Nwosu.
“For those who do not know, Nwosu is the longest serving chairman of a political party in the history of Nigeria.
“He has been serving for the past 17 years, you must understand that this is contrary to the provision of constitution of the ADC which says that a chairman of the ADC can hold position maximum for consecutive period of two terms of four years each.
“For some reasons best known to INEC we do not know how Nwosu was able to hold on to that position for the past 17 years,” he said.
Kachikwu said that tenure of Nwosu and all members of the NWC elapsed on Aug. 28.“Nwosu sought for tenure elongation, he reached me directly and indirectly pleading for us to extend his tenure,” he said.
Kachikwu said that the forum of state chairmen of the party, however, kicked against the planned tenure elongation saying it was illegal.
“Since his tenure has lapsed it is only the National Executive Council (NEC), made up of state chairmen of the party, which has the power to run the affairs of the party and take decisions.
“That was why the elements behind my purported suspension sent out an unsigned document to the media since none of them have any mandate to take any legal action on behalf of the ADC having ended their tenure since Aug.28,” he said.
Kachikwu said that his purported suspension was due to his stance that the party constitution must be upheld.
” I told them that as the presidential candidate of the party I will do everything to uphold the constitution of the ADC,” he said.