PDP Crisis: Atiku, Wike camps clash over Ayu’s sack

PDP Crisis: Atiku, Wike camps clash over Ayu’s sack

The decision by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to ease out its embattled national chairman, Senator Iyorcha Ayu in obedience to court order has further stoked the crisis in the main opposition party.

Party National Publicity Secretary, Mr. Debo Ologunagba, announced Ayu’s replacement with  the Deputy National Chairman (North), Umar Iliya Damagum, as acting national chairman, at a new conference in Abuja, yesterday.

On Monday, a High Court in Makurdi, Benue State, had restrained Ayu from parading himself as chairman pending the determination of the substantive suit which has been adjourned to April 17 for hearing.

A member of the party, Terhide Utaan, had approached the court presided over by Justice W. I Kpochi, to obtain an order to restrain Ayu from parading himself as national chairman. His Igyorov Ward Exco had earlier suspended him on Sunday.

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Ologunagba said the NWC at an emergency meeting, acknowledge the order of the Benue High Court on March 27 with regards to the chairmanship position of the party.

“After a careful consideration of the Court Order and in line with Section 45 (2) of the Constitution of the PDP (as amended in 2017), the NWC resolved that Damagum assumes the national chairmanship of our party in acting capacity with effect from today, Tuesday, March 28.

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“The NWC charges all leaders, critical stakeholders, teeming members and supporters of our great party to remain calm and united at this critical time,” he said.

Damagum, in his remarks said he would be in acting capacity pending the determination of the court on the matter before it.

“I will have a meeting immediately after this session with the NWC to check on what is happening within the party,” Damagum said.

Asked what Ayu came to do in the office earlier in the morning, Damagum said the embattled national chair was not in the office to chair any meeting but might have come to pick his belongings.

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Also asked of his agenda especially on the gale of suspension of some members of the party, Damagum said the NWC would meet today, possibly to  review it.

While the G-5 camp led by Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike, has hailed Ayu’s sack, the camp loyal to the presidential candidate, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, said the action was illegal.

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