PEOPLES DEMOCRATIC PARTY (PDP)
ONDO STATE CHAPTER
It will be an uphill task for any factional group to organise another lawful, valid and acceptable alternate PDP primary in Ondo State as there awaits several hurdles awaits for such faction to cross.
Judging from the fact that the PDP constitution 2012 (as amended) remains a legal and binding document for all members of the PDP in Nigeria, any group intending to replicate the PDP primary election must bear it in mind that Section 25(1) of the PDP constitution clearly stipulates the members of the party who constitute the State party Congress.
The following extracts from the constitution would serve as guide:
“25(1) There shall be a State Party Congress which shall consist of –
(a) the State Chairman, who shall be the Chairman.
(b) the President or Vice President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, who are members of the Party from the State;
(c) the Governor and Deputy Governor of the State, if members of the Party.
(d) the members of the Board of Trustees from the State;
(e) the members of the State Executive Committee ;
(f) members of the National and Zonal Executive Committees from the State;
(g) the members of the National Assembly from the State and the members of the State House of Assembly, who are members of the Party;
(h) all elected Local Government Council Chairmen and Vice Chairmen who are members of the Party;
(i) all Local Government Party Secretaries and Treasurers
(j) all Local Government Women and Youth Leaders;
(k) three delegates per Ward elected at Ward Congresses at least one of whom shall be a woman, and all of whom shall cease to function after the conclusion of the Congress for which they were elected;
(l) former members of the State Working Committee who are still members of the Party;
(m) former Governors and Deputy Governors produced by the Party who are still members of the Party; and
(n) former Speakers and Deputy Speakers of the State House of Assembly produced by the party who are still members of the party”.
It, therefore, follows that the so-called factional group cannot satisfy any of the requirements for the composition of a State Party Congress of the Party going by the requirements stipulated in subsection a to n of the party’s constitution section 25(1).
At present, the State Chairman, Engr. Faboyede and his entire Executive Committee members, Mr. Governor and his Deputy, Zonal Executives of the Party, all the five National Assembly members, all the 18 elected council chairmen and 18 elected Vice Chairmen, all party secretaries, treasurers, women and youth leaders, former members of the State Working Committee who are still members of the Party and the three delegates elected at the 203 Ward Congresses participated and voted at the August 22, 2016 Governorship Primary election held in Akure under the supervision of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) which produced Eyitayo Jegede (SAN) as the flagbearer of the PDP in the November 26, 2016 gubernatorial election in Ondo State.
The structure of the PDP from the 203 wards up to the State level is not subject to contention in any court of competent jurisdiction in Nigeria and as such, the so-called factional PDP cannot replicate the already existing PDP structure within the State.
The three ad-hoc delegates can only emerge through authenticated, legally uncontentious party structure at the ward and State level in line with the operational party constitution 2012 as amended).
The court injunction restraining the claimants of the factional group from parading themselves or convoking any meeting or Congress described as PDP for the purpose of electing a factional governorship candidate has not been set aside.
Therefore it will be contemptuous and criminal for anybody to take law into his hands by attempting to act contrary.
Despite the above, the party is still duly committed to a genuine post primary reconciliation among members who truly believe in the party for overwhelming victory at the poll.
Hon. Banji Okunomo
Ondo State P[truncated by WhatsApp]