Crisis is brewing in the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) as some leaders of the party are reportedly plotting an offensive against the National Chairman, Uche Secondus, and members of the National Working Committee (NWC) over alleged poor management of party affairs.
The source said the planned offensive is fuelled by the growing discontent over Secondus’ leadership style.
The NWC is accused of stoking the embers of discord in some state chapters and for not convening regular meetings of the National Executive Committee (NEC).
Daily Sun gathered that some aggrieved party leaders who are dissatisfied with Secondus have commenced moves to sack him as part of efforts to realign the party in readiness for the 2023 election.
“Party leaders are unhappy with Secondus and the NWC over the handling of the crisis in the House of Representatives caucus of the party, as well as the circumstances surrounding the loss of the last governorship election in Bayelsa State,” a source told Daily Sun.
It was learnt that five state chapters including Lagos, Kano, Plateau, Ogun and Bayelsa are enmeshed in crisis. While Lagos, Kano, Plateau and Ogun chapters are torn apart by leadership crisis, Bayelsa PDP is polarised by the outcome of the last governorship poll.
Section 31(4) of the PDP constitution( as amended in 2017) stipulates that NEC, which is the second highest organ of the party, meets at least once in a quarter to take decisions on key issues, including matters affecting states and zonal organs of the party.
Investigation revealed that the last time the national chairman convened a NEC meeting was June 20, 2019. A source at the PDP national secretariat in Abuja told Daily Sun that “a cabal” has hijacked the daily operations of the party.
“We can’t be happy with him (Secondus). He has not been handling the party well, especially the case of Lagos. If they have held NEC, people would have drawn their attention to this misgovernance. But they didn’t hold any NEC meeting. Some people just take decisions and give it to the national secretary, he signs it, and sends it out in the name of the NWC.
“The NWC has not been doing what it ought to do. In fact, it has been causing more confusion all over the place. There is hardly any state where the NWC has not caused one crisis or the other. Many people believe that the national chairman should go, the NWC should be disbanded. That is what many of our people think.”
A NEC member, who is also a former governorship aspirant in one of the southern states, said members of the Board of Trustees (BoT) came short of passing a vote of no confidence on Secondus and the NWC late last year.
He, however, said stakeholders had been managing the crisis so it doesn’t harm the party.
Another PDP NEC member told Daily Sun that some aggrieved leaders of the party, including governors, have concluded plans to move against Secondus in no distant time.
“We will demand for a new chairman. You know our national chairmanship slot should have gone to South West. We still believe it should go there. It is not late. People are not happy with the party leadership. We are just coming from an election. Wait and see what will happen. What I can assure you is that no person is bigger than the party,” he said.
Ike Abonyi, media aide to Mr. Secondus, declined comments, saying Kola Ologbondiyan was in the best position to speak on the issues affecting the NWC.
When contacted, the PDP spokesman told Daily Sun that the party does not respond to rumours. He noted that the NWC since its assumption of office has followed laid down format in carrying out its activities.
“The party does not respond to rumours, innuendos and beer parlour gossips. The PDP is a structured political party with established organs, much more than any other political party in Nigeria. And as such it has an established format of carrying out its activities. And under leadership of Secondus these responsibilities have not been called to question. I am sure that NEC has been called as when due,” Ologbondiyan said.
Meanwhile, PDP has accused the All Progressives Congress (APC) of endangering national unity by allegedly pursuing exclusionist policies and failing to bring perpetrators of violence to book among others.
The PDP in a statement said efforts by well-meaning Nigerians and groups to ensure unity and harmonious co-existence were allegedly being destroyed by the APC and the present administration through alleged disregard for the federal character principle in appointments, projects and programmes.
The opposition party stated that President Muhammadu Buhari’s habitual body count and reference to the sordid experience of the unfortunate civil war, particularly to the youth, is rather fuelling disunity, as his administration is still perpetuating similar, if not worse injustices, inequality, corruption and impunity that lead to disunity.
“It is sad that Mr. President is always trying to face the nation backward instead of looking ahead to a glorious future. This is a sorry situation, which further confirms that the Buhari Presidency and the APC have nothing cheering to offer to the future of our nation.