PDP Chief Asks Court to Sack Treasurer, Deputy Spokesman

A member of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the South-West, Chief Pegba Otemolu, has asked the Federal High Court in Abuja to nullify the elections of the party’s National Treasurer and Deputy National Publicity Secretary of the party, Aribisala Adewale and Diran Odeyemi, respectively, who emerged at the December 9, 2017 convention of the party.

Otemolu, in his suit marked FHC/ABJ/CS/1284/2017 and filed on December 23, 2017, asked the court to substitute Adewale with Chief Folorunsho Babalola as the National Treasurer and Bamidele Salam as the Deputy National Publicity Secretary.

The plaintiff joined the PDP, the Independent National Electoral Commission, Adewale and Odeyemi as the defendants. He contended that the nomination and the subsequent emergence of Adewale and Odeyemi as national officers of the party violated an earlier judgment of the court delivered on June 24, 2016.

He said he remained the PDP’s zonal secretary in the South-West having been elected for a tenure of four years alongside other members of the party’s executive committee in the zone at a congress held on October 11, 2017.

He also contended that the authenticity of his South-West Zonal Executive Committee was sanctioned by a judgment of the Lagos Division of the Federal High Court on June 24, 2016.

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Therefore, he argued that failure of the party to recognise his executive committee’s list of delegates for the party’s December 9, 2017 national congress had rendered the elections of Adewale and Odeyemi “purportedly” nominated by the South-West zone of the party a nullity.

A supporting affidavit filed alongside the suit was deposed to by Egodo Elvis, a litigation officer in the law firm of the plaintiff’s lawyer, Rickey Tarfa (SAN).

He stated, “That by the terms of the judgment dated June 24, 2016 of this honourable court, the plaintiff’s South-West Executive Committee of the 1st defendant (PDP) are the valid and authentic executive committee until their tenure expires; as such, they are the Executive Committee to be accepted and recognised for any purpose on issues relating to the South-West Executive Committee of the 1st defendant including the convening of the national convention of the 1st defendant.

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“The 1st defendant proceeded with its national convention on December 9, 2017 at the Eagle’s Square as scheduled, however, it failed and refused to accept, accord or recognise the delegates of the plaintiff’s South-West Executive Committee of the 1st defendant as forwarded by the plaintiff’s executive committee to the 1st defendant.”

He added, “That the nomination of the 3rd and 4th defendants, Hon. Aribisala Adewale and Hon. Diran Odeyemi respectively as the nominees of the South-West Zone of the 1st defendant (PDP) for the position of the National Treasurer and the Deputy National Publicity Secretary of the 1st defendant by the parallel executive committee of the 1st defendant in the South-West ought to be nullified.”

He is therefore seeking among others, “An order nullifying the conduct of the convention of the 1st defendant at Eagle’s Square, Abuja, on December 9, 2017, as relates to the officers of the National Treasurer and Deputy National Publicity Secretary of the 1st defendant.

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“An order directing the 1st defendant to immediately replace Hon. Aribisala Adewale, the 3rd defendant and Hon. Diran Odeyemi, the 4th defendant with Chief Folorunsho Babalola and Bamidele Salam respectively as the Treasurer and Deputy National Secretary of the 1st defendant.”

No date has been fixed for the hearing of the case.

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