Posted by News Express | 10 November 2014 | 4,919 times
There was confusion yesterday at the Cross River State secretariat of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) along Murtala Mohammed Highway, Calabar, when security operatives from the State Quick Intervention Squad (QIS) sealed off the premises.
QIS vehicles was seen stationed opposite the secretariat with heavily armed operatives, while an official of the Civil Defence Corps stationed at the locked gate said he had instructions not to let anyone in.
The sealing off of Cross State chapter of the PDP coincided with a comment by Senate Leader, Victor Ndoma-Egba and others who were suspended at the weekend by the Cross State PDP that their suspension was a huge joke.
Newswatch Times gathered that the sealing off was not unconnected with the current crisis in Cross River PDP over the delegate ward congress, which reports said, produced different lists of delegates.
This development, however, affected the screening of aspirants which was billed for last Saturday, despite the fact that aspirants together with national and state officers had converged at the Transcorp Metropolitan Hotel for the exercise.
Unconfirmed reports said the national officers and the state executive council had to relocate to a nearby hotel for meetings to sort out the delegates lists, whereas another report said there was an injunction restraining the PDP from carrying out screening.
Before going to press, our reporter sought audience with the State Chairman of the party, Ntufam John Okon, but he sent SMS with the following information: “I am in Abuja. Security at this stage is normal, Okay?”
Efforts to reach other members of the party’s executive could not sail through as all their handsets were virtually switched off.
In a chat with newsmen yesterday, Senator Ndoma-Egba said while he was yet to be officially notified, his supposed suspension would amount to nothing.
“I have heard of the rumour. I don’t believe that the State Chapter of our party, the PDP, will display such crass ignorance. If they did, then it is a pity and quite unfortunate. It would be a comedy of very frustrated people,” he said.
A governorship aspirant and former Group Manager, Crude Oil Marketing at the NNPC, Goddy Jeddy Agba, who was among those suspended, described the action of Cross River State PDP as illegal, laughable and evil.
A statement signed by his media consultant, Phrank Shaibu, read: “We read with suppressed disgust the news of the purported suspension of Prince Goddy Jeddy Agba, few hours after an unprecedented and record breaking crowd received him at a grand reception in Calabar.
“We find the purported suspension not only laughable but illegal, evil, insidiously cunning, artfully deceptive and to say the obvious, undemocratic.”
Agba lambasted the state chapter for allegedly not following due procedures, insisting that the process employed by the PDP was ‘a new level of political brigandage.”
To Dr Sandy Onor, who was also suspended, “the action is a joke, a desperate joke by a vanquished cabal.”
It could be recalled that the PDP at the weekend, gave the names of those suspended to include Jones Tambang, Tony Ngban, Livinus Odigha, Dr Godwin Igiri, Kenuth Ndoma-Egba, Ubi Itam Eta, Venatius Ikem, Ernest Irek, and Samuel Willie.
Okon said since Ndoma-Egba and Chris Eta of House of Representatives were members of the National Assembly, the state chapter could not slam suspension on them. As such, he has referred their case to the national body.
Okon explained the decision to suspend the members thus: “Following the just concluded delegate congress, a lot of issues occurred. We have some party members that have ridiculed the party, and some of them have gone to court against party rules. Some induced members to compromise the system.
“Some other party members from across the state sent petitions to the party here. I had to summon the party exco in the state to sit over them. We did not have to waste time unnecessarily over them.
“When the exco looked at the whole petitions, they passed a resolution that those involved in such allegations be suspended. They were referred to appropriate party committee in line with constitution of the party for thorough investigations.”
•Source: Newswatch Times. Photo shows Senator Ndoma-Egba.
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