INEC Endorses PDP’s Convention In Port Harcourt


*As party getS stay of execution oF court order

Onyebuchi Ezigbo in Abuja

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has said that it would only recognize the national convention of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) scheduled for Saturday in Port Harcourt, Rivers state capital.

The commission’s Director of Media and Publicity, Mr. Osaze Uzzi, who spoke ON Thursday on the looming threat of a parallel convention by some aggrieved elements in the party, said that it is only the PDP convention in Port Harcourt that it will monitor having met its guidelines.

“There’s only one convention known to the law and our regulations for which we were given appropriate notice is the one in Port Harcourt. INEC will monitor the elections to all offices exception national chairman, secretary and Auditor for which we have been served with a court order, ” he said.

Despite efforts by the leadership mend fences with aggrieved members of the PDP, the rebellious group under aegis of the the concerned stakeholders, made up of 54 top leaders of the party, have threatened to go ahead with arrangements for a parallel convention. They demanded among others the suspension of the convention to allow for proper reconciliation over disputed congresses. The group led by the former Minister of Information, Prof. Jerry Gana and former Deputy Senate President, Ibrahim Mantu warned that if their demands were not met, they may be forced to hold their own convention in Abuja.

Meanwhile, in a bid to ensure that nothing stops the convention, the PDP has secured a stay of execution to free it from the Justice A.B Mohammed’s judgement barring the party from conducting elections into some positions in the party’s NWC.
A Federal High Court in Lagos on Monday, granted an injunction stopping the elections into the offices of the National Chairman, National Secretary and National Auditor.

In another suit filed before Justice A. B. Mohammed of the High Court of the Federal Capital Territory sitting in Jabi yesterday by Chief Emeka Debia against PDP in suit no FCT/HC/CV/1443/2016 in a final judgment delivered today, barred PDP from conducting election into 18 National offices at its May 21, 2016 Convention.

The judge stated that the tenure of the National Secretary and National Auditor of the party will expire by December 2018 while the remaining Officers tenure will expire by 30th August 2017 with the exception of the National Financial Secretary and Chairman whose offices are vacant.