Former President Olusegun Obasanjo
By James Sowole
Barely two months to the October 20 gubernatorial election in Ondo State, an Akure High Court Thursday restrained all members of the state and local government executives of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) from parading themselves in various offices.
However, the party at a news conference addressed by the Director-General of the party’s candidate for the election, Dr Oludare Bada, said the ruling had nothing to do with the party’s candidate, Chief Olusola Oke, whose choice was unanimous by all the aspirants of the party.
Bada said the party had filed notice of appeal of the ruling while notice for stay of execution of the ruling had also been filed.
The restriction order on the executives was sequel to the nullification of congresses that produced the leaders of the party at the state level and throughout the 18 local government areas of the state.
The order of the court delivered by Justice C. E. T. Ajana in its ruling was given while determining an application for an injunction brought by some members of the PDP, noting that the congresses were held in disobedience of an order of the court.
The plaintiffs in the suit which has been adjourned to November 2012 are Mrs Alaka Abigail, Adetokunbo Michael, Fanika Oluwasina and Akinyemi Rufus.
The plaintiff through their counsel, Kayode Olorunfemi averred that the congresses that produced the officers were conducted after an order of the court that restrained the defendants from participating as candidates or directing the conduct.
The defendants in the suit were members of the nine-man interim committee headed by Ebenezer Alabi that was put in place following the resignation of the Omotayo Dairo-led executive.
“The state congress of Peoples Democratic Party in Ondo State purportedly held on March 17, 2012, at Helena Hotel, Ijapo Estate Akure in which the defendants herein took active part in flagrant disobedience of a subsisting order of the court dated March 9, 2012 is hereby annulled and nullified.
“All those who purportedly emerged as officers or members of the Ondo State executives of the PDP, particularly the defendants in this suit on March 17, 2012 in flagrant disobedience of the court’s order dated March 9, 2012 are here restrained for now from parading themselves as members of the Ondo State executives of the Peoples Democratic Party until the final determination of the suit”, the judge stated.
The Olusola Oke Campaign Organisation Director General, said the candidate emerged though a process that was supervised by the national executive of the party and the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), adding that the ruling was on entirely a different issue.
The PDP said the preparation for the election is ongoing, stating that the national leadership of the party would storm Akure, the state capital tomorrow to flag-off the campaign of the party for the election.
Tagged ‘PDP Unity Rally’, Bada said the rally that would take place at the Democracy Park in the heart of Akure, would attract leadership of the party including the former President Olusegun Obasanjo, the Chairman of the Governor’s Forum, Rotimi Amaechi of Rivers State, the national vice-chairman of the party in the South-west, Mr Segun Oni, the former Governor of the Ondo State, Dr Olusegun Agagu among others.