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Secondus sets to stop PDP national convention with fresh suit

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Secondus sets to stop PDP national convention with fresh suit
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Secondus sets to stop PDP national convention with fresh suit

Suspended National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Prince Uche Secondus, has moved against the party’s national convention slated for October 30 and 31, 2021. According to Secondus, the PDP cannot go ahead with its plans to hold the convention with his appeal against his suspension yet to be determined.

Consequently, Secondus, through his lawyer, Mr. Tayo Oyetibo, has written to the leadership of the PDP to warn that it would be illegal for the party to hold the convention pending the hearing of an appeal he filed against his suspension. Recall that a High Court in Port Harcourt, Rivers State, had on September 10, 2021 delivered a judgement restraining Secondus from performing the functions of the office of National Chairman of the PDP.

Secondus had filed an appeal at the Port Harcourt Division of the Court of Appeal seeking to upturn the judgement of the lower court. The letter from Secondus’ lawyers to the PDP reads: “We act for the appellant in the above captioned matter, Prince Uche Secondus, who was the National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), prior to the institution of Suit Number PHC/2183/CS/2021, and wish to bring to your attention the following facts:

“On 23 August 2021 one Mr Ibeawuchi E. Alex and four others jointly instituted Suit No PHC/2183/CS/2021 at the High Court of Rivers State, Port Harcourt Judicial Division against Prince Uche Secondus and the PDP as Defendants.

“On 10 September 2021, the High Court of Rivers State delivered its judgment in the Suit whereby Prince Uche Secondus was, inter alia, restrained from performing the functions of the office of National Chairman of the PDP.

“An appeal has been filed and entered against the judgment at the Court of Appeal, Port Harcourt Judicial Division. In addition, an Application on Notice has been filed in which Prince Uche Secondus is seeking, inter alia, the following orders:

“An Order of injunction restraining the Peoples Democratic Party, the 6th Respondent herein, whether by itself, its officers, servants, agents and or representatives from holding or conducting its National Convention scheduled for 30 and 31st October 2021 or any other date, pending the hearing and final determination of this appeal.

“The application has since been served on you and other Respondents in the appeal. Notwithstanding the service of the Application for injunction, it has come to the Notice of our client that the PDP and its officers continue to prepare to hold the National Convention on 30 and 31 October 2021

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“This letter is intended to draw your attention to the position of the law of Nigeria on this subject as encapsulated in the judgment of the Supreme Court of Nigeria in the celebrated case of GOVERNOR OF LAGOS STATE vs. CHIEF EMEKA ODUMEGWU OJUKWU (1986) I NWLR (Part 18) 621 @ 637, in which the court, reviewed various decisions on the point, and approved the following principles as the correct position of the law, that is:

“The rule is well settled …… that where a suit is brought to enjoin certain activities ……of which the defendant has notice, the hands of the defendant are effectually tied pending a hearing and determination even though no restraining order or preliminary injunction be issued…..

The conclusion to be drawn from all the cases is that after a defendant has been notified of the pendency of a suit seeking an injunction against him even though a temporary injunction be not granted, he acts at his peril and subject to the power of the court to restore the status wholly irrespective of the merits as they may be ultimately decided.”

“ The same position was taken by the Court of Appeal in CHIEF ELIAS OKEKE-OBA vs. IKWUKA OKOYE (1994) 8 NWLR (364) 605 @ 617-618, where the court said as follows:

“The general practice is that on application for an order for interlocutory injunction, all activities affecting the res, ….are automatically terminated as a mark of respect to the court before whom the application is pending.…..if..parties to the suit senselessly rush their tortious trespassory activities…in the spacious belief that that would promote their unfounded claims to the res. Nothing can be farther from the truth. Such heedless posture is, to say the least, a fragrant disrespect to the court. It clearly, in my opinion amounts to intransigence for a party against whom an order for injunction is sought to intensify his interference with the res.. The court cannot be hoodwinked by such impropriety of unlawful acts in relation to the res.……Nor can the person in such disrespect be allowed to take advantage of his default and flagrant intransigence.”

Secondus sets to stop PDP national convention with fresh suit

“ The logical corollary of the foregoing pronouncements of the courts is that having been served with an application seeking to restrain the holding of its National Convention pending the determination of the appeal filed by Prince Uche Seconds, the PDP would be embarking upon a collision course with the court if it proceeds to hold the National

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Convention before the hearing and determination of the Application.

“Should such contumacious conduct of holding the National Convention before the hearing and determination of the Application be embarked upon by the Party however, we shall not hesitate to bring the full weight of the law against all national officers of the Party that are responsible for such conduct of contempt of court.

“ Quite apart from the fact that such contumacious conduct would impinge on the integrity of the Party, we would on our part, swiftly take steps to invoke the jurisdiction of the court to nullify any decision, action or step taken at such Convention.

Joined in the suit are the PDP Acting National Chairman, the Chairman, PDP National Convention Committee, the PDP National Organising Secretary, the PDP National Legal Adviser and the PDP National Secretary.

Following the suspension of Secondus, the Deputy National Chairman (South) of the party, Elder Yomi Akinwonmi, in line with the PDP constitution, has been acting in his stead. Akinwonmi presided over the National Executive Committee (NEC) meetings, where crucial decision, including the setting up of the convention committee, were taken. The Nation gathered that the embattled chairman may also ask the court to declare all decisions taken by the Akinwonmi-led NWC as illegal.

The media team of the PDP chairman had earlier revealed that he is under pressure to move agitation the party and stop the convention. According to Ike Abonyi, Special Adviser to Secondus, “Prince Secondus is really under pressure for justice and would seek it anywhere to save the party from hirelings out to destroy and derail the focus of the party. The party leaders are aware of who went to court against it and knows what to do rather than indulging in the mind game. Nothing short of Justice and respect for its servants will save PDP from the hands holding now.

“For the avoidance of doubt the justice Prince Secondus is seeking is as enshrined in the party constitution which is Supreme and states clearly how a National Chairman and any National officer can be sanctioned even where there is a known beach talk less where this none.”

Secondus sets to stop PDP national convention with fresh suit

The Nation also gathered that Secondus has received the support of some prominent leaders and chieftains of the troubled party to pursue his case against the party and stall the convention. Checks by The Nation revealed that some party leaders currently aggrieved with the ongoing zoning and micro-zoning arrangements within the PDP may have resorted to backing Secondus in his bid to ensure that the convention does not hold as planned.

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“The zoning controversy is also not helping matters. Those who are afraid that they are losing out are now supporting Secondus. They see him as one way of stopping the convention. Among them are very influential party leaders across the country and some national assembly members. Secondus on his own feels it is unfair for the party to keep him in the dark and be planning to elect a replacement for him. He is very optimistic that he has a good case,” a source told The Nation on Friday.

Meanwhile, Governor Seyi Makinde of Oyo State has confirmed the interest of former Vice President Atiku Abubakar, Governor Bala Mohammed of Bauchi State and Aminu Tambuwal, Governor of Sokoto State, in the 2023 PDP presidential ticket. Speaking during a current affairs programme on Channels Television, monitored by our correspondent, Makinde said the three northern PDP chieftains have indicated interest to contest presidency in the next general elections. He described them all as “eminently qualified personalities in PDP that can lead the country successfully.”

“I make bold to say that the situation in this country today, the only way that you can stop PDP at the federal level is by dividing PDP internally. All the governors of the PDP are well aware of this fact and we made unity within ourselves our number one priority. Once the governors of PDP are able to move in one direction, align on most of the issues and the challenges we are faced with, I think there is hope for this country. The issue right now is that PDP has eminently qualified personalities that can lead this country successfully.

“Some have indicated interest, like former Vice-President Atiku Abubakar, like Governor Tambuwal, like Governor Bala Mohammed. They have indicated interest. But the bottom line is when we get to that bridge, we will definitely cross it. What is important at this stage, which I will solicit the support of PDP members and the generality of Nigerians, is please support us to have a successful national convention. There is no way you can become anything, president, vice-president, even governor, if we don’t have a party. What we want to do first is ensure that we get things right within our party,” he said.

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Chris Ngige Affirmed By APGA As Anambra APC Leader For Supporting Soludo

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Chris Ngige Affirmed By APGA As Anambra APC Leader For Supporting Soludo
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Chris Ngige Affirmed By APGA As Anambra APC Leader For Supporting Soludo

The All Progressive Grand Alliance (APGA) has affirmed the Minister of Labour and Employment, Senator Chris Ngige, as the leader of All Progressive Congress (APC) in Anambra State, for supporting Professor Chukwuma Soludo, the winner of the just-concluded November 6, 2021 governorship election in the state.

The National Chairman of All Soludo Support Group (ASSG), Chief Jude Emecheta, gave the affirmation over the weekend during the group victory party celebration of the November 6, 2021 election, held at Prof. Dora Akunyili Women Development Centre Awka, the state capital.

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According to him, Ngige deserves to be respected for playing a mature opposition rule in the state, especially, during the governorship election.

“Ngige, in a goodwill message by his Media Office, shortly after the announcement of the winner by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), congratulated the former Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) for a resounding victory at the poll, saying it is a victory well-deserved,” he said

Emecheta, who was reacting to the eleven political parties that have filed petitions against the outcome of the gubernatorial election that produced Soludo as the winner, advised the parties to sheathe their swords and allow the governor-elect, who massively won 19 local government areas at of 21 LGA in the state to concentrate on his development agenda for Ndi-Anambra.

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“Not that APGA is afraid to confront them in the court, but I am appealing to them, especially, Senator Andy Uba of the APC, to withdraw their petitions because I know and I believe, they will not succeed, because Soludo’s victory is a mandate from God and the good people of Anambra. They are only going to court to spend their resources and to show their political relevance,” he added.

Speaking further, Emecheta, who is also the Managing Director of Anambra State Signage and Advertisement Agency, urged members to pray for the party’s victory at the tribunal.

Present at the victory party celebration were Deputy governor-elect, Dr Onyekachi Ibezim; Deputy Speaker, Anambra State House of Assembly, Dr Paschal Agbodike; Traditional Ruler of Umueri, Igwe Ben Emeka; the Convener of SSG, Mr Chinedu Nwoye; member representing Njikoka Constituency II at the state House of Assembly, Hon. Pete Ibida; Transition Committee Chairman for Idemili North Council Area, Mr Asha Nnabuife and members of the Support Group, among others.

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Taraba APC Stakeholders Threaten To Burn Their Brooms

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Taraba APC Stakeholders Threaten To Burn Their Brooms
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Taraba APC Stakeholders Threaten To Burn Their Brooms

The crisis rocking the Taraba State chapter of the All Progressives Congress (APC) have taken a nosedive as some critical stakeholders of the party are threatening to collapse the entire party structure into another political party, following what they called negligence of the chapter of the party by the national leadership.

A stakeholder who spoke to our correspondent in confidence on Sunday said that the party has done very well in ensuring that President Muhammadu Buhari gets overwhelming support in the state since 2015 but was disappointed that the President has never reciprocated the gesture to the party.

He said that the failure of the President to appoint another Minister for Taraba several months after he dropped the then Minister of Power Saleh Mamman has shown clearly that the President may not have the interest of the party at heart especially now that the party is warming up for another general election.

“In 2015, the APC gave the President overwhelming support in Taraba. Infact, you will remember that the crowd that came out to welcome him was so much that it led to a stampede and the death of several persons. The only thing we got was the minister of Women Affairs who later left the party ahead of the 2019 elections. We went into that election almost naked. Even at that, we still have him landslide in Taraba.

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“Now again, after the 2019 elections, the President appointed someone who was little known in the party and he could not galvanize the party. But at least he was there. Sadly, we are facing the next general elections and there is no clear plan for the party. Several months after the President sacked the minister, Taraba state has remained with a minister and no serious national appointee. This is detrimental for the party.

“We had hoped that the President will look at the records and see those that actually worked for the party over the years and appoint someone who has the track record of bringing the people together so that all the issues bothering the party could be addressed and yet nothing is been done. So what is the point staying in the party? As it is, the party needs a leader apart from the state officials who can bring all the stakeholders together to sort out our issues and prepare ahead of 2023.

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Taraba APC Stakeholders Threaten To Burn Their Brooms

“I can tell you in confidence that already consultation is underway to move the party structure in Taraba to another party. What is the point staying when we are not appreciated and have been abandoned by our leaders? What is the motivation here when hard work and absolute loyalty counts as nothing? It is this same action that cost the party Taraba state governorship in 2019. We can not sit back and watch that happen again.

“To further worsen the situation, we learnt that some people in government are lobbying for some persons who are either not party members at all or are, at best, Fairweather members, to get tickets and appointments. What message are they trying to send to those that have worked faithfully and tirelessly for the party? So don’t be surprised if you wake up tomorrow to witness the death of the APC and birth of a new party in the state”.

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The APC has been through some challenging times in the state with some attributing it to a lack of clearly acceptable leader of the party at the state level who can bring all the stakeholders to a round table and sort out their differences in a manner that will be tolerable by all parties involved.

Another member of the party Alhaji Sani Umar noted that the reward system of the party seems to work well everywhere else except in Taraba state.

Umar said that “the APC does not consider Taraba chapter of the party for anything at all. As a state where the President won election back to back even though the PDP is the ruling party in the state, it is sad that we are not considered for appointments and other good things that come with been in leadership.

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Ekiti PDP describes council election as monumental fraud

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Ekiti PDP describes council election as monumental fraud
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Ekiti PDP describes council election as monumental fraud

The Ekiti State chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has discredited the recently concluded local government election in which the ruling All Progressive Congress (APC) won all the chairmanship and councillorship positions in the 16 local government councils as well as in 19 newly-created Local Council Development Area (LCDA).

The main opposition party had boycotted the election, claiming that the APC is incapable of organizing any free and fair election devoid of violence.

The other six political parties however participated in the election. They include; Action Alliance (AA), African Democratic Congress (ADC), All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA), All Progressives Congress (APC), National Rescue Movement (NRM), and Young Progressives Party (YPP).

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The Ekiti State Publicity Secretary of the PDP, Raphael Adeyanju, in a press statement made available to newsmen, in Ado Ekiti on Sunday, claimed that the results of the election and the obvious low turnout of voters have confirmed the opposition’s fear that the result had been predetermined by the APC.

“The reality in Nigeria today is that the APC cannot win any free and fair election in any state of Nigeria. That none of the six other political parties that took part in the council election was able to win a single councillorship position shows the desperation of the ruling party.

Ekiti PDP describes council election as monumental fraud

“Those parties were only used to give credibility to the local government election. We knew this, and that was why we kept away from the charade. Ekiti electorates have also understood the antics of the ruling party and refuse to be used, No wonder, the election recorded the lowest turnout of electorates in the history of Ekiti State. Events from across the state on Saturday clearly showed that the people of Ekiti have rejected the APC and its government,” he said.

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The PDP spokesman also described the conduct of election in the newly-created LCDAs as unconstitutional, claiming that since the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria recognizes only the existing 16 local government areas in Ekiti State, election in the 19 LCDAs is an aberration and a waste of resources.

Adeyanju said: “The creation of mushroom LCDAs is an act of political gerrymandering, which is a fraudulent creation of constituencies to favour the ruling party. It is an act that was carried out without proper consultation with all relevant stakeholders, especially the opposition parties.”

The PDP also alleged that Governor Kayode Fayemi has a penchant for creating LCDAs when his party is about to lose a gubernatorial election.

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“The APC government has as usual created the LCDAs to become a burden for the in-coming PDP administration in Ekiti State. We can see how the 16 existing local government areas have been under-developed by the APC government. They are all in a sorry state and have been left at the mercy of the predatory state government,” he added.

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