Ekiti PDP Leaders In Battle Of Supremacy | Independent Newspapers Limited
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Ekiti PDP Leaders In Battle Of Supremacy

Posted: May 21, 2015 at 1:27 am   /   by   /   comments (0)

By Yaqoub Popoola,  Ado-Ekiti


All is certainly not well with the Ekiti State chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) as a major crisis has hit the State Executive Committee resulting in the polarization of its officials. Daily Independent learnt that the unexpected outbreak of crisis might not be unconnected with the crisis the national body of the party.

Ekiti State Governor, Ayo Fayose, is leading a crusade aimed at unseating the National Executive Council members of the PDP led by Alhaji Adamu Muazu whom he has accused of compromising the PDP victory in the last presidential election.

Olatunde and Ogundipe

Olatunde and Ogundipe

Again, Fayose is not in good terms with the PDP Vice Chairman, South-West, Makanjuola Ogundipe, because of the latter’s role in the ill- fated consensus arrangement in the state.

Incidentally, a former Vice Chairman of the party in the state, Mr. Olatunde Olatunde, has announced the sack of the Chairman, Idowu Faleye, on account of ineptitude and alleged fundamental flaws associated with his emergence. The arrow-head of the revolt is said to be secretary of the party, Tayo Aluko (alias TKO).

It was also gathered that attempt by Faleye’s group to suspend the dissidents resorted in a clash where he (Faleye) reportedly sustained bodily injuries.

Olatunde who claimed to have assumed the leadership position of the PDP in Ekiti in acting capacity maintained that the PDP guidelines were grossly manipulated to pave way for the emergence of the embattled chairman. He explained that it was when stakeholders confronted Faleye with the alleged iniquities that he (Faleye) agreed to voluntarily relinquish his position.

As things are now in the state, Olatunde’s group which controls a large chunk of the State Working Committee (SWC) have the support of the South-West and National Secretariat while the Faleye camp enjoys the support of governor Ayo Fayose and the Elders’ Forum in the state.

Buttressing his argument, Olatunde said the PDP South-West office and the National Secretariat were in tune with the latest action taken by his group.

Said Olatunde: “We held the State Executive Committee’s meeting at our secretariat in Ado Ekiti on Wednesday where Chief Idowu Faleye was confronted with the fact that we made mistake in his appointment. We follow Federal Character in the appointment in our party. We cannot appoint two different principal officers from the same ward; it is against our constitution. Faleye is from the same Ido Ward 1 where the State Youth Leader comes from.

“Apart from this, the former Chairman never called any meeting since he came on board. We confronted him at the meeting with all these and he willingly stepped down after a prolonged argument and debate. Going by the constitution, when an officer resigns, such position will be filled from his zone. Faleye is from Ido/Osi and I am from Ilejemeje and it was on the basis of this that the SEC, the highest organ of the party elected me in acting capacity.”

Olatunde, who added that the change in the leadership was yet to be communicated to Fayose, said Faleye’s removal was not an attempt to get at the governor. He assured that the governor remains a respectable leader of the party.

He explained further: “We have not told the governor, but he was aware of the action informally. But we will visit him before Friday to officially notify him. Though we have not breached any constitutional provision by not confiding in the governor before taking the action, because going by the constitution of our party, there is a difference between governance and the party. The governor holds the governance but he is a PDP member under me.”

Olatunde insisted that the change in the leadership won’t result in any implosion in the party, saying it was targeted at strengthening the party and repositioning it for better outing in future elections.

“We are making a change for the betterment of the party. Those who had abandoned the party have started calling us since Tuesday, promising to work with us. So I know that this will make our party to wax stronger. But if there are issues to settle, we won’t hesitate to do that. All we are doing is to make the PDP stronger for better performance.”

But Faleye, in a swift reaction, dismissed the report of his sack from office, describing those behind the plot as enemies of the party. He insisted that he had not committed any offence that could warrant his ouster.

Faleye, who addressed newsmen alongside former deputy governor, Chief Paul Alabi and Senator Clement Awoyelu, said he remains the Chairman of the party, while also dispelling the allegation of inefficiency leveled against him.

He said what his adversaries were requesting for was the payment of six months arrears of their honourarium totaling N11 million, “which I told them I cannot do without getting the approval of the party leader.”

The embattled Chairman added that it was wrong for Olatunde to have described his appointment as illegal, saying the party satisfied all constitutional provisions before appointing him in his present capacity.

Faleye, who hails from Ido Ekiti in Ido/Osi Local Government was appointed the Chairman in 2014, following the elevation of Mr. Makanjuola Ogundipe, who once occupied the seat, as the National Vice Chairman, South-West.

Meanwhile, the PDP Elders Forum has condemned the action of Olatunde’s group and called for restrain. The elders faulted the purported removal of the state chairman of the party, Faleye, describing it as a fraud.

In the statement signed by a member of PDP Board of Trustees, Chief Clement Awoyelu, the elders said it was “absolutely wrong and unexpected” of Olatunde to have declared himself chairman after a meeting held with the aggrieved members where it was resolved that the matter would be resolved amicably.

While passing a vote of confidence in the Faleye-led executive, the Elders’ Forum warned Olatunde-led faction to tread softly and avoid anything that could witch-hunt the “legally installed party chairman.”

While admitting that the bone of contention is the controversial N11.2m unpaid honorarium to the SECOND members, the elders promised to meet the governor, Mr. Ayodele Fayose on the need to assist the party financially. They agreed with Faleye that the governor, as the leader of the party, should be briefed on all activities of the party, including its financial matters.

In his reaction, Olatunde said the body of elders has no “locus standi” in the PDP constitution, adding that there was no going back on Faleye’s removal. He said: “I am the state chairman, Faleye remains suspended. The body of elders has no place in our party’s constitution. It is only the NWC that can give the elders assignment to do and they have not been given any.”

The elders’ stance notwithstanding, the aggrieved members insisted that Faleye’s removal subsists and that no Jupiter could reverse it.

In his reaction, Olatunde said the body of elders has no “locus standi” in the PDP constitution, adding that there was no going back on Faleye’s removal.

He said: “I am the state chairman, Faleye remains suspended. The body of elders has no place in our party’s constitution. It is only the NWC that can give the elders assignment to do and they have not been given any.”