In what may be seen as a coup, some leaders of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Saturday appointed the Senator representing Ekiti South, Mrs Biodun Olujimi, as the leader of the party in Ekiti State and the South-West.
In the same manner, the stakeholders passed a vote of no-confidence on the Chief Gboyega Oguntuase-led State Working Committee of the party in Ekiti, calling on the National Chairman of the party, Chief Uche Secondus, to dissolve the executive and set up a caretaker committee to pilot the party’s affairs.
There was ominous sign of crisis in the PDP on Thursday, when some party members stormed the party secretariat in Ado Ekiti and locked it up, which signaled that they no longer had confidence in the party leadership in the state.
The stakeholders said they decided to call for the disbandment of the State executive due to alleged financial recklessness being exhibited by the SWC.
In a communiqué signed at the end of the stakeholders’ meeting held in Ado Ekiti on Saturday, the party said it took the decision to install Olujimi as leader since she is the most top-ranking elected official in the state and the Southwest.
The resolution, signed and read by the Protem Secretary of the PDP Stakeholders and former Assembly member, Hon Bunmi Olugbade, also overruled the SWC on the suspension of former State Secretary of the party, Dr. Tope Aluko , saying he remains a bonafide member of the party.
The leaders also resolved to back the candidacy of former Vice President Atiku Abubakar and other candidates in Ekiti to win the 2019 elections.
It said: “We are poised to reposition and return the PDP back to the people and therefore call on the party leadership to constitute an independent committee to look into the affairs of the party in Ekiti state with a view to repositioning the party for the 2019 elections.
“that there is an urgent need for reconciliation and the panacea for true reconciliation is the immediate dissolution of the present state working committee of the PDP and a constitution of caretaker committee.
“that we appreciate the efforts of Dr. Aluko in discovering and detecting the illegal and suspicious withdrawals from by members of the SWC and hereby urge Senator Olujimi to liaise with the national working committee to freeze the party’s account in Ekiti with
“That Senator Olujimi should constitute Advisory committee in all the 16 local governments to midwife reconciliation and also Finance to strategise and mobilise funds for the party.
“That we appeal to our members who are aggrieved or sitting on the fence to come back to the party. Again, we stand by our party national exco , our presidential candidate, Alhaji Abubakar Atiku , the various candidates in Ekiti State and promise to vote for them substantially,” it concluded.
Senator Olujimi said ex-Governor Ayo Fayose was excluded from the meeting because he had just been released from detention by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) over alleged financial fraud.
“We knew what he might have passed through by staying in detention and we know it might not be easy for him to attend this meeting, so there is no faction at all in our party. My being appointed the Leader does not mean there is crisis.
“The very day he left office was the day he was summoned by EFCC and we knew the rigour he had passed through”, she added.
She added further: “We are going to work together, I mean with former governor Fayose. What we are doing is that, we don’t want to allow his exit from office to mean the end of PDP in Ekiti.
“So, let me assure our supporters that we are on the same page with former Governor Fayose and other stakeholders. We are not
factionalised and we shall work hard and ensure will win in next year’s election,” she said.