BREAKING: Four PDP Governors Set To Dump Party

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The leadership crisis rocking the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), seems to be heading for the worse as four of the party’s elected governors are believed to be considering the option of quitting the opposition party.

The concerned governors, are all from the southern part of the country, according to unimpeccable sources, feel miffed by the way the party is being run at the moment.

The governors, it was gathered, are disenchanted that the leadership crisis bedeviling the PDP is not being handled or addressed appropriately, noting that the party is now being controlled by one person at the detriment of other genuine and founding members.

The crisis within the PDP, has spilled over to and negatively affected the activities of the PDP Governors.Forum (PDP-GF), under the chairmanship of Sen. Bala Mohammed, the Governor of Bauchi State, and other organs of the party. 

The aggrieved Governors, it was further learnt, are not happy with the steering of the Forum by Sen. Bala Mohammed, compared with when the immediate-past Governor of Sokoto State, Sen. Aminu Waziri Tambuwwal, was on the saddle.

The Bauchi state governor is widely known to be nursing a presidential ambition ahead of the 2027 general election.

His aggrieved colleagues believed that the ambition is not allowing him (Sen. Bala Mohammed) to take the right decisions in most cases.

Some of the governors are similarly accusing Mohammed of pandering too much towards the bidding of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu of the All Progressives Congress (APC), rather than showing interest in matters that are of primary concern and benefit to the PDP.

The Chairman of PDP-GF, some claimed, is alleged agent of the immediate-past Governor of Rivers State and current Minister of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Barr. Nyesom Wike, within the PDP-GF and in some of the decision taken within the PDP hierarchy.

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Gov. Mohammed, for instance, is believed to be among those still sustaining the incumbent acting National Chairman of the PDP, Amb. Umar Ilya Damagum in office, despite series of opposition against him.

During the last National Executive Committee (NEC) meeting of the PDP, some party chieftains and stakeholders tried moving for change in the national leadership of the party, but were prevailed upon to sheath their sword.

The NEC meeting then resolved that the issue of leadership change be suspended till August, this year  when the matter will be dispassionately looked at with appropriate decisions taken. 

Surprisingly however, a group led by the Yobe State PDP Chairman, Damagun’s home State, believed to be sympathetic to the Damagum-led National Working Committee (NWC), last week got a court order backing Damagum to remain in office (as acting National Chairman of the PDP) till 2025.

This court order was obtained in clear contravention of the resolution of the last PDP’s NEC that a change should be effected in August by allowing the North Central Zone of PDP to complete Sen. Iyorchia Ayu’s term.

The aggrieved governors, who are believed to have made up their minds to renounce their membership of the main opposition party, are reportedly angry, among others, on how the PDP has handled the issue of the crisis in Rivers State between Wike, Governor Siminalayi Fubara and their supporters.

“Have you seen where one man is bigger and more powerful than an entire party put together before? Come to the PDP, you will see one,” declared Hon. Ikenga Imo Ugochinyere on behalf of the 60 aggrieved members of the PDP in the House of Representatives.

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“From what happened and which we have seen so far, it is like the national leadership of the PDP is afraid of the former governor, who is not even one of the founding members of the PDP. 

“This is very sad. If these people fail to wake up, from their slumber and act right, there may not be a party called PDP, before the 2027 general election,” he stated.

In another breath, the decision of the party’s national leadership to sustain the National Secretary of the party, Sen. Samuel Anyanwu in office, after he ran for primaries and emerged as the PDP governorship candidate for the last Imo State governorship election, contested and lost to the incumbent Governor and candidate of the APC, Sen. Hope Uzodimma, is equally another issue that some members are not happy with.

It will be recalled that the South-East zonal executive committee of the PDP, had in a communique issued at the end of their meeting in Enugu, among others, asked Sen. Anyanwu to stop parading himself as the National Secretary of the PDP, as he had relinquished the office by virtue of the constitution of the PDP, upheld by a court of competent jurisdiction. 

The meeting affirmed the nomination of Hon. S.K.E. Udeh-Okoye, erstwhile National Youth Leader of the party, as his replacement to serve out the remainder of his term, in accordance with the party’s constitution.  

According to the communique of the party’s meeting of 20th February, 2024, Section 47(5) states clearly that any elected PDP national officer who wishes to contest an elective office must resign. The National Executive Committee (NEC) of the party, was to determine the length of the resignation via a guideline.  

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Also, Clause VI of the PDP Governorship Primary, mandatorily required the resignation of any elected national officer of the party vying for elective office, seven days before the purchase of Expression of Interest Form and shall provide proof of resignation along with his or her completed EOI Form before being allowed to procure the Nomination Form. 

“Failure to adhere to this provision shall be grounds for automatic disqualification of such an aspirant.”

They noted that an Enugu State High Court, on 28th December 2023, held that Sen. Anyanwu, by standing for the governorship primary “had elected on his own volition to vacate the office of National Secretary”.

The Court further ordered that S.K.E. Udeh-Okoye be recognised as the National Secretary of the Party,” they said.

But, a contradicting ruling of a court of concurrent jurisdiction, the Federal High Court, Abuja, about 2 weeks later, on 9th January, 2024, declared that Anyanwu should remain the National Secretary. 

They therefore enjoined the NWC of the party, the PDP Governors’ Forum, the PDP Board of Trustees, and all organs and stakeholders of the party, to recognise S.K.E Udeh-Okoye as the authentic National Secretary of the party.

Another source of discontent, our correspondent gathered, revolve on purported plot by the national leadership of the party to bring the Rivers State sacked PDP lawmakers (who defected to the APC) back to their former status both in the party and as elected members of the legislature to rev up the plot to remove Gov. Fubara to please Wike.

In this respect, a pliant Senior Advocate of Nigetia has been paid to do litigations to give effect to that.

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