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Ogun PDP crisis deepens as Showunmi vows to “fight to the end”

By Sodiq Omolaoye, Abuja
17 August 2022   |   5:20 pm
The crisis rocking the Ogun State chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) appears to be far from over as Former governorship aspirant of the party, Otunba Segun Showunmi has vowed to fight the ongoing battle for the opposition party's ticket to the end.

PDP

The crisis rocking the Ogun State chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) appears to be far from over as Former governorship aspirant of the party, Otunba Segun Showunmi has vowed to fight the ongoing battle for the opposition party’s ticket to the end.

Showunmi expressed confidence that at the end of the struggle, which is already before the courts, and with the first victory at the Court of Appeal, on Monday, he would emerge the authentic candidate of the PDP in Ogun State in the next few weeks.

Addressing newsmen on the outcome of the Appeal Court judgement, in Abuja, on Wednesday, he said it was necessary to clarify issues, considering the barrage of calls and deep interest of the public in the matter, noting that he was humbled by the number of Nigerians that were interested in the case.

The spokesperson to Atiku Abubakar, the PDP presidential candidate in the 2019 election, observed that for the health of democracy, Nigeria should have passed that stage where the imposition of candidates would be the order of the day.

The Court of Appeal in a judgement delivered by Justice Chidi Nwaoma Uwa, on Monday, found Showunmi’s appeal meritorious, with regard to two of the issues he raised in the suit against PDP and two others.

Reacting to the judgement, Showunmi said: “I went through the right channels right from the beginning even before the primary election, to draw the party’s attention to the anomaly going on in Ogun State. I want to put it on record that no one can intimidate me into conceding defeat where I am a winner. I will fight this battle to the end and will be on the ballot. No individual has a monopoly of wealth. Where is even the wealth? We must run on ideas. I have a network of family and friends that can easily and comfortably prosecute a governorship election,” he said.

“When the party declared open the sale of forms, it meant anybody who wanted to contest for any position including the presidency, should start buying form. My colleague, Hon Ladi
Adebutu purchased his form on the very first day. Ironically, upon buying his form, Hon. Adebutu went to the media – the Television, Newspapers and Online platforms saying that the Executive Committee (EXCOs) of the Peoples Democratic Party bought the form for him.

“I reasoned that if we were to go into a contest that requires us to get adhoc delegates from the Excos in the wards and follow the rules that will lead to getting the delegates that will put together an electoral college that will elect the party’s candidate, I felt that the constitution of the PDP had been compromised and broken because the fact that they bought a form for a particular candidate shows that there is a bias, and that they have been compromised.

“Secondly, the Oath of Office of the EXCO which includes that they will be free, fair and just to all and sundry had also been compromised. The Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria had also been breached relative to how political parties are to organise themselves.

“I, therefore, wrote a letter to the national organ of our party – the National Chairman’s Office, the National Secretary’s Office, the National Organizing Secretary’s Office and the National Legal Adviser’s Office, saying that it is unfair to purchase a contest form for one among several contestants. I offered remedial opportunities alongside my complaint.

“As a remedy, I recommended that the EXCO, which action showed bias should be dissolved or set aside while a fair set of people should be brought on board to superintend the primary election process.

“I gave a number of sound and progressive advice, and I explained that if they failed to do the needful, I would have no alternative but to seek redress in court. Because of their penchant to disregard everything that other people in other civilizations will treat as serious, I wrote the letter in the court and gave them a proof of service from the Federal High Court, Abuja.”

He said the Court of Appeal had been very thorough in its judgement and had given him victory in that first step, adding that every Nigerian must be able to exercise his legal rights within the law.

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