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PDP crisis worsens as faction stages protest in Lagos

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Scores of supporters of Segun Adewale, a chieftain of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Lagos State, on Tuesday staged a protest at the party’s secretariat, asking Dr Adegbola Dominic, to stop parading himself as the Chairman of the party in the state.

The protesters numbering about 50, carried placards with various inscriptions declaring their support for Adewale as the chairman.

Some of the inscriptions on the placards include “Adewale is our real Chairman’’, ”Adewale is the man to free PDP in Lagos ” and ” Dominic, you are on your own”.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the party has been having issues bothering on who the authentic chairman is.

Both Dominic, an ally of a former Deputy National Chairman of the party, Chief Olabode George and Adewale, popularly known as Aeroland, had addressed party faithful at different times at the secretariat, each affirming himself as the authentic chairman of the party in the state.

Mr Ezekiel Oriyomi, who spoke on behalf of the pro-Adewale protesters, however, said Dominic could no longer claim to be chairman of the party as his tenure had lapsed.

He said they and other members of the party only recognised Adewale as the authentic chairman of the party, saying any other person making the claim was an impostor.

“We, members of PDP in Lagos State are solidly behind Adewale, the authentic chairman of the PDP in Lagos State, any other person claiming to be chairman is an impostor.

“We are asking Dominic to stop parading himself as Chairman. He was appointed as interim Chairman in December 2018, as interim Chairman for 90 days and so his tenure has expired because we are now in April.

“His tenure was characterised by crises and electoral misfortunes for the PDP in the state. We cannot continue like this in Lagos PDP.

“Adewale was not sacked but only stepped aside and the expiration of Dominic’s tenure means Aeroland is our substantive chairman.

“Adewale is the only one we recognise and he is the only one we believe that can change the fortunes of the PDP in Lagos for the better,” he said.

Oriyomi claimed Dominic was only out to serve certain interests in the party, saying members of the party in the state were with Adewale.

Adewale, who addressed a cohort of party faithful at the secretariat afterwards, said he remained the authentic Chairman of the party.

He said he only stepped aside in 2017 following a directive of the national leadership shortly after the Supreme Court affirmed Sen. Ahmed Makarfi as National Chairman.

Adewale, who aligned with the Sen. Ali Modu-led national faction, said he only allowed Mr Moshood Salvador, his rival factional Chairman, to take over in the interest of peace.

He said Salvador dumped the party to join the All Progressives Congress (APC) in 2018 and he made attempts to step in as Chairman.

He claimed that there were appeals from all corners to allow another person from the George/Makarfi group to lead in the interim as the general elections were underway.

Adewale said he agreed with the idea and that Dominic emerged as the interim Chairman for three months in December 2018.

The party chieftain added that Dominic’s tenure had expired in March and that he could no longer claim to be Chairman of the party in the state.

He said he was now the Chairman as he was not sacked by any court and that his mandate would only expire in 2021.

“I am the Chairman of the party. Forget about what anyone is saying. You can see the overwhelming support from the members of the party.

“The real owners of the party in the state are behind me. Dominic cannot claim to be Chairman. His tenure has lapsed, he should stop parading himself as Chairman because I only stepped aside,” he said.

He said the dismal performance of the party in the state in the last governorship elections had shown that Dominic lacked the capacity to move the party forward.

He claimed Dominic with some elders of the party in the confessed not to have supported the governorship candidate, Mr Jimi Agbaje, during the elections.

“How can we allow people who don’t have the interest of our party in the state to continue take us for a ride? Enough is enough and we must now have the leadership we deserve,” he said.

On the claim by Dr Eddy Olafeso, South West PDP Chairman that the party in the zone only recognised Dominic as Chairman, Adewale said only the national leadership of the party and not zonal leadership could clear the matter.

He said Olafeso belonged to the Bode George group and that it was expected that he would be on the side of Dominic.

Adewale said he would only relinquish his position as ”Chairman” if the national leadership declared otherwise or a congress was organised to elect a new executive for the party in the state.

He denied membership of the Action Democratic Party (ADP), saying his detractors were only ”spreading that lie’ to discredit him.

“I am not a member of ADP. Yes, I used the ADP platform in Ekiti for the governorship election, which I lost.

“I have since returned to PDP in Lagos. It is normal in politics to be adopted by another party for elections and that was what happened.

“Atiku was in the APC and he contested as presidential candidate of PDP after defection. So what are these people talking about? It is all lies to get what does not belong to them,” he said.

Adewale added that he achieved so much during his reign as factional chairman and that he would achieve much more this time too.

NAN recalls that Dominic, while addressing party faithful at the secretariat recently had described the claim by Adewale as“arrant nonsense.”

He said Adewale was a member of ADP and that he had not officially returned to the PDP.

Dominic also claimed that he was the right chairman and that he was recognised by both the zonal and national leadership of the party.

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Buhari

Ajimobi: I Don’t Want To Be Minister Under Buhari, Prefer To Be Senator

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A former governor of Oyo State, Abiola Ajimobi, says he prefers to be a senator in Nigeria to being a minister.

His reasons are not farfetched.

Fielding questions from journalists in Ibadan, the ex-governor infamous for his ‘constituted authority’ statement explained why he would want to be a federal lawmaker in the senate and not a minister under President Muhammadu Buhari.

“I hold President Muhammadu Buhari in high esteem. I will actually prefer a younger person to be considered for the ministerial slot since I am pursuing my senatorial ambition,” he stated.

He added, “I am in court for my senatorial election. I only expressed my preference that I am in court because I prefer the Senate.




“How can I be pursuing the Senate and ministerial appointment at the same time? I prefer the Senate.”

Ajimobi, however, pointed out that President Buhari had not offered him any ministerial appointment, noting that it was a reason he was committed to the petition the All Progressives Congress filed against Senator Kola Balogun at the tribunal.

Balogun, who contested on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), was declared the winner of the Oyo South senatorial district election by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

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Crime

Save Lagos From Child Cultism, African Action Congress Tells Sanwo-Olu

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The Lagos State Chapter of the African Action Congress has called on Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu to immediately address child cultism and insecurity in Lagos.

The party stated that the terror of child cultism was rapidly growing in the state, estimating that ‘six out of every ten children’ in Lagos are cultists.

The party said, “a 72-hour mass violence of child cultism with different names like “Omo Kesari” , “Awawa” “One Million Boys,” Seven Street Boys in Oshodi; Judas Iscariot Boys in Ejigbo; and others in Idimu, Ikotun and other areas vindicate the reports that Lagos is one of the most underdeveloped states in Nigeria, given the wealth owned by the state and the fact that its debt is second only to the Federal Government.”

Kunle Wizeman Ajayi, Acting State Chair of AAC, heaped the blame of child cultism on the low quality of education in the state, adding that the political leaders further impoverished the people by taking over all local trade places in the state.

“The reign of child cultism today can be attributed to the general collapse of public education in Lagos as well as the mass unemployment in the state. Private schools are times three of public schools.

“It is also appalling that most of the trading power of our poor people like markets, mechanic villages, and sports arenas have all been destroyed, seized.

“Then what kind of government is ignoring the night economy? This is a lucrative economy that can even resolve unemployment as well as reduce child cultism,” Wizeman said.

He stressed that the Lagos State government must put measures in place to equip and ensure all children have access to free education.

He also urged the state governor to desist from the indiscriminate arrest of innocent citizens through the machinery of the state government.

“Child cultists can be trained to become the greats of the future with democratic, pro-people standards!

“Governor Sanwo-Olu must also not resort to setting the Lagos Task Force loose to arrest traders, innocent citizens, and Okada riders. Face the real issues and tackle the problems headlong.

“Even if a government wants to prevent trade littering the streets, is it not much more correct to create alternative spaces for these traders instead of violent repression.

“Lagos AAC calls on Lagos towns to immediately build independent community Vigilance Teams. Then we all need to demand that Lagos is truly made working at all levels through free functional and compulsory education.

“Massive industrialisation and creative development of the night economy are needed to cater for employment and reducing poverty,” Wizeman stated.

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Law

Abia lawmakers pass bill to set up House of Assembly Service Commission

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The bill to establish Abia State House of Assembly Service Commission, has been passed into law by the leadership of the current 7th house.

The passage of the bill took place during the State Assembly plenary sitting on Wednesday, after it (Bill)had been subjected to all necessary legislative procedures.

The Speaker of the State Assembly, Rt. Hon. Chinedum Orji, who presided over the sitting, pointed out that the bill if signed into law by the Executive arm of government would strengthen the democratic structure of the State.

He listed other merits of the bill if it becomes a law to include, granting the State House of Assembly financial autonomy and creating more job opportunities among Abians.

Meanwhile, the Speaker, Orji, has assured that the current 7th leadership of the house will pay serious attention to their oversight functions in order to aid the workings of the State government.

The Speaker gave the assurance, while addressing his colleagues during the plenary session of the Assembly, opining that the recent constitution of Adhoc Committees to probe some of the Abia government agencies and Boards were not designed to witch-hunt or blackmail anybody, as it has been hinted in some quarters.

He said, “No amount of blackmail will stop the house from giving legislative backing to support the Governor of Abia state in improving the lives of Abians.

“We, as members of the legislative arm of government will not allow anyone intimidate us in the discharge of our duties”.

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