Edo PDP faction suspends Ikimi, Dokpesi, others
Crisis is brewing in the Edo chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) following the alleged suspension of chieftains across the three senatorial districts of the state by a faction.
The suspension was contained in a communiqué signed by former chairman of the Nigeria Football Association, Emperor Jarret Tenebe and two-time time chairman of Owan West Local Council, Dan Asekhema after a stakeholders’ meeting at the weekend in Benin City.
In the communiqué issued yesterday in the ancient city, a vote of confidence was passed on the party’s state chairman, Chief Dan Osi Orbih, offering him six months’ extension to enable his executive committee to conduct the governorship primaries.
The document reads in part: “We the Edo PDP Integrity Group also announced the adoption of former governor of the state, Chief Lucky Igbinedion as the leader of our party in Edo State. Those allegedly suspended by the group include erstwhile Foreign Affairs Minister, Chief Tom Ikimi; ex-deuty governor, Chief Mike Oghiadohme; one-time Minister of Works, Mike Onolememen; Chief Raymond Dokpesi; Senators Yisa Braimoh; Victor Oyofo and a former Leader of the House of Representatives, Tunde Akogun.
It explained the suspension slammed on some of the leaders, alleging: “Chief Oghiadohme was seen when he flew a helicopter with Governor Godwin Obaseki last weekend to attend the convocation of the Edo university Iyamho.
“He even displayed the sign 4+4, endorsing Obaseki when we have our own PDP aspirants. Chief Ikimi and others have been holding clandestine meetings with Governor Obaseki so he can join PDP and take the ticket.
“We are also aware that they have been meeting with the state chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Anselm Ojezua with a view to perfecting this plan. We believe as a party, we must instill discipline because it is something like this in the past that led to the problem of PDP in Edo State.
“As we move towards the 2019 governorship election, we urge our aspirants to disregard the activities of greedy politicians and continue their campaigns. We will fight indiscipline in the PDP no matter whose ox is gored.”
However, a statement by the State Publicity Secretary of the PDP, Chris Nehikhare, disowned the group, adding that it had no power to suspend “or even say they are suspending respected leaders of our party especially as they lack such powers.”
He said: “Their attempt to offer an extension to the tenure of Chief Dan Orbih is not only laughable but infantile. Chief Orbih has not requested for any extension. He has said he is going at the expiration of his tenure in March 2020. That is the position of the party.
“Their behaviour is mischievous and condemnable. They are not members of any organ of our party and as such cannot issue statements or releases on behalf of the PDP.“We will not hesitate to discipline any party member that submits himself to be used as a political tool in the hands of our political opponents.”
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