Reprieve Again as 91st PDP NEC Pass Confidence Vote on Secondus, NWC

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National Chairman of PDP, Uche Secondus

Chuks Okocha reports that for the second time in less than two months, two important organs of the PDP have passed a vote of confidence on the national chairman, Prince Uche Secondus and members of his NWC..

For the second time in two months, the various organs of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) have passed a vote of confidence on the national leadership of the party.

The vote of confidence is from no other body than the National Executive Committee (NEC) of the party. The NEC is the highest decision making body of the PDP. It is only inferior to the national convention. National convention don’t hold always, but the NEC holds quarterly or members can be summoned on issues of importance to the party administration.

Earlier in the second week of March this year, the Board of Trustees (BoT) of the party passed a vote of confidence on the National Working Committee (NWC).

The feeling or general implication for this is an indirect way of saying shut up to all voices of distraction in the party. The NEC clearly made it loud to all listening ears that it will not accept a distraction at all as its effort is concentrated on the 2023 general elections.

At the meeting, all members that spoke canvassed the need for unity.

Also, the Thursday’s vote of confidence is coming at a time the party is ruffled by the allegations of misappropriation of N10 billion being proceeds from the sales of nomination forms. Though, the National Working Committee (NWC) has come out strongly to refute the allegation.

The petitioner Prince Kassim Afegbua alleged that the leadership has mismanaged close to N10bn which accrued from the sale of nomination forms for the presidential, gubernatorial, house of assembly and senatorial elections from 2017 to date.

Responding to the petitioner, the National Publicity Secretary of the PDP, Kola Ologbondiyan described the claim as “spurious ” and “irresponsible”.

The National Publicity Secretary said that the PDP did not raise Afegbua’s fictitious sum of N10 billion as alleged by him, explaining that only N4. 5 billionaire , “For the avoidance of doubt, the PDP generated the sum of N4.6 billion raised a budget for its expenditure, in line with all known financial regulations of our party.

According to him. “This budget passed through the organs of our party and received the approvals from the NWC, the Governors’ Forum, the Board of Trustees as well as other organs of the party.

“As a law-abiding political party that respects the doctrine of rule of law and transparency, the budget was presented to the National Executive Committee (NEC) where it also received a final approval, the party stated.”

The 91st NEC meeting of the PDP was an emergency meeting summoned to look after the allegations within the party. At the meeting, the national chairman. Secondus gave a vivid account of the sales of nomination forms for the 2019 election and at the end of the day, Secondus was given ovation on how the NWC managed all issues relating to the funds of the party.

According to the National Publicity secretary, Kola Ologbondiyan who read the communique said that NEC unanimously passed a vote of confidence on the National Chairman, Prince Uche Secondus as well as the member of the National Working Committee (NWC).

According to Ologbondiyan, NEC further cautioned party members at all levels to be weary of agents of distractions and division while praising the effort of the NWC for being focused and purpose driven in piloting the affairs of the party.

The party’s NEC expressed satisfaction because approval was sought and obtained from all the standing organs or the party before disbursement.

Comments from former senate president, Senator Anyim Pius Amyim, to the Senate Minority Leader, Enyinnaya Anaribe, to the House minority leader, Ndudi Elumelu and the governor of Bauchi state, Bala Mohammed, has one thing in common. They all hammered on the need for unity in the party, unity is the only key to the PDP victory in the 2023. They variously argued that the party would not tolerate any form of distraction from any quarter. It was on the strength of this, that a vote of confidence was passed on the Uche Secondus led NWC of the PDP.

This was the same way, the Board of Trustees (BoT) of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) said that it would ensure that the National Chairman, Prince Uche Secondus, and members of the National Working Committee (NWC) serve out their tenure which expires in December.

It also said that the party would do everything necessary to take over power from the All Progressives Congress (APC) in 2023, explaining that it is taking steps to resolve all disputes within the ranks of the PDP and unite it for the attainment of its objective.

There have been reported moves by some PDP governors to remove the national chairman as part of the permutations for the bid for power in 2023.

But the BoT said as the conscience of the party that it would ensure this does not happen.

“The Board of Trustees will ensure that a fluent and uninterrupted operation of all the organs of the party, particularly the National Working Committee (NWC), remains in place leading up to a successful convention in December 2021,” it said in a communiqué signed by its Secretary, Senator Adolphus Wabara.

It said it would ensure that harmonious relations exist between the organs of the party, adding that a detailed meeting between the BoT and the NWC is planned to be held soon.

It said it is working with other stakeholders to resolve disagreements among party members as a way of ensuring peace and stability in the main opposition party.

According to the communiqué that Wabara read to reporters, the BoT reviewed and discussed the situation of the party nationwide, stating that this was necessary due to the heightened political and economic tensions in the country.

The purpose of the meeting, Wabara said, was to ensure the stability of all the organs of the party and to place them on the alert as the party prepares to take over power once again.

The communiqué said the BoT recognised the ongoing work of the Reconciliation and Strategy Committee, led by a former Senate President, Senator Bukola Saraki.

“The meeting was briefed on the outcome of zonal congresses held over last weekend. Three out of the six congresses have been successfully concluded.

“The Board of Trustees in playing its statutory role as the conscience of the party will work earnestly towards ensuring that the highest level of morality exists in all its activities and that all the members of our party live up to expectation,” it said.

The communiqué added that the board is committed to not allowing any strained relationship between all members, particularly at the top management level of the party.

“With a determination to do all that is necessary to ensure that we fulfill the overwhelming desire of the vast majority of the people of Nigeria that the PDP regains national power in 2023, the board is unequivocally committed to ensuring that normalcy and peace prevail through all the organs of the party to permit the development and implementation of well-structured plans,” it said.

It added: “Finally, the board is very appreciative of the commitment of our governors to the party and the exemplary roles they have all been playing to keep the party at the optimum operational level.

“The board will consult with the governors’ forum on necessary measures towards solidifying the party.”

Commenting on the zoning of the presidency, a BoT member and former Deputy Senate President, Senator Ibrahim Mantu, said: “Zoning is in the PDP Constitution, it is a party matter.”

Another member and a former Minister of Foreign Affairs, Chief Tom Ikimi, however, said it was too early to discuss the matter.

“It is still too early for the PDP at this point in time to declare its position on zoning.

“You know very well that APC has done five years now; politics as far as Nigeria is concerned is between APC and PDP. PDP has to be very careful in dealing with this issue; we will take it step by step. I believe that your concerns will be taken into consideration when the decision will be made,” he said.

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Thursday’s vote of confidence is coming at a time the party is ruffled by the allegations of misappropriation of N10 billion being proceeds from the sales of nomination forms. Though, the National Working Committee (NWC) has come out strongly to refute the allegation. The petitioner Prince Kassim Afegbua alleged that the leadership has mismanaged close to N10bn which accrued from the sale of nomination forms for the presidential, gubernatorial, house of assembly and senatorial elections from 2017 to date