Politics

PDP To Scuttle National Convention, Bayelsa APC Members Write Buni

Kuwekuzi Agbe

Aggrieved members of the All Progressive Congress (APC) in Bayelsa State have raised an alarm over an alleged plot by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to use the unresolved crisis in some states, particularly Bayelsa, to scuttle the February 26 National Convention of the Party.

The members in a letter sent to the Yobe State State Governor and National Caretaker Chairman of the Party, Gov. Mai Mala Buni, warned that the refusal of the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Chief Timipre Sylva, to convene a stakeholder meeting to resolve the factional crisis, may be Bobby trap to truncate the convention.

They said the party leaders in the state have refused to convene a meeting as recommended by the reconciliation committee as the executives set up at the ward, local government and state level are all invalid delegates.

The Abubakar Adamu reconciliation committee after a meeting with leaders of the party in Bayelsa State resolved that the state leader of the party, Timipre Sylva should convene a meeting of stakeholders of the APC in the state.

The meeting is expected to be hosted by Chief David Lyon to resolve the issues raised in the petition within 7days but with a few days to the national convention, the key actors in the crisis are yet to agree on a meeting.

The aggrieved members under the aegis of the Grassroot Mobilizers Forum of APC, Bayelsa State Chapter, said the purportedly elected officers of the party in the state should not be invited or allowed to come close to the forthcoming National Convention in order to save the party’s fortune.

In a statement by the group and signed by its Chairman, Idutimi Komonibo, the Secretary-General, Barr. Dallas Ebibi and the Vice-Chairman, Reuben Wilson, stated that in order to put the records correctly and to save the forthcoming National Convention of APC, we wish to further communicate to you in writing the “TRAP” the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has set to fault the National Convention.

“With due respect Sir, the “BAIT” the PDP is using to set the “TRAP” is the “INVALID DELEGATES”. That the Bayelsa State purported elected officers from Wards, LGA and State should not be accepted or inaugurated and that the Bayelsa State purported Elected Officers should not be invited or allowed to come close to the forthcoming National Convention in order to save the party’s fortune.”

“That when an order of court injunction is issued and an appeal is filed to vacate that order, it has given life to that order until the Appeal Court makes a pronouncement. This area should be properly looked into by an independent team of lawyers. That the party at the national level should rather invite only statutory delegates in Bayelsa State to escape the legal issues that have been set or trapped by People’s Democratic Party (PDP).”

“We plead with the National Caretaker Committee, National Reconciliation Committee, and the Progressives Governors Forum to prevail on Chief Timipre Sylva, Minister of State for Petroleum, Heineken Lokpobiri and Chief Lyon David, Former Governor-Elect, to seek political solutions in Bayelsa State APC, to address the disunity and withdraw all pending cases in court”, the letter read.

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According to the group, “the decision to unite the factions of APC in the state by the National Reconciliation Committee has been paid a deaf ear and the signals are clear that someone somewhere is planning evil against the party for disobeying the directive of the National Reconciliation Committee. This again is very worrisome indeed.”

They explained that the invalid status of the party’s executives, purportedly elected during the contentious ward, local government, and state congresses, was procured due to a court order issued to stop the ward, local, and state congresses respectively in the High Court at Yenagoa by aggrieved members of APC.

“Within the period the order was issued, the APC through their legal counsel filed an appeal in the Court of Appeal, Port Harcourt, with Appeal No CA/PH/246/2021 to vacate the order. Within the same period, as the appeal is still pending in the Court of Appeal, the APC State Secretary of Bayelsa State wrote a letter dated 2nd of September 2021 to INEC to witness the Ward and LGA Congresses which were scheduled by them for 3rd and 4th September, 2021 respectively.”

“A two days’ notice is a violation of the electoral law. While the electoral law says 21 days’ notice must be given to INEC to witness any political party congresses. Also, their action was contempt of Court by conducting Congresses while the Court order was still subsisting in suit No. CA/PH/246/2021. (That the law says anyhow an order of Court injunction is stupid, it should be obeyed).”

“The Appeal Court said that the Appeal filed by the APC to vacate the order in Bayelsa State Ward, LGA & State congresses is fundamentally defective. In a unanimous Judgement, the Court went on to say that the congresses conducted within that period are invalid. By that pronouncement of the Appeal Court, all the purported elected officers in those congresses are invalid”

“The Court of Appeal went on to say that the respondent in the appeal can file for a contempt of court against the appellant by disobeying the court order of the trial court. All the court cases and the processes served that are stated in this letter are with the legal department of APC at the National Secretariat, Buhari House, No 40 Blantyre Crescent, Wuse-Abuja.”

“We, therefore, recommend as follows that the Bayelsa State purported elected officers from Wards, LGA, and State should not be accepted or inaugurated. That Bayelsa State purported Elected Officers should not be invited or allowed to come close to the forthcoming National Convention in order to save the party’s fortune.”

“That when an order of court injunction is issued and an appeal is filed to vacate that order, it has given life to that order until the Appeal Court Makes a pronouncement. This area should be properly looked into by an independent team of lawyers. That the party at the National level should rather invite only statutory Delegates in Bayelsa State to escape the legal issues that have been set or trapped by the People’s Democratic Party (PDP).”

“Finally, we plead with the National Caretaker Committee, National Reconciliation Committee, and the Progressives Governors Forum to prevail on Chief Timipre Sylva, Minister of State for Petroleum, Heineken Lokpobiri and Chief Lyon David Former Governor-Elect to seek Political solutions in Bayelsa State APC, to address the disunity and withdraw all pending cases in Court.”

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