By Sani Shehu, Benin.
The national leadership of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP has been alerted to alleged plots to forge ahead with the harmonisation of the structures of the Edo State chapter of the party despite a pending court case against the exercise.
Dr. J.Y. Musa, SAN, lawyer to some elected officials of the party in Edo State in a letter to the Acting National Chairman, warned that continuing with the harmonization would amount to a criminal contempt with its grave consequences on all concerned.
The notice to the party follows concerns that the development could also affect the position of the party in future and past elections as party stakeholders were mirroring the situation in Edo State to that in the Zamfara State chapter of the All Progressives Congress, APC ahead of 2019 General Election.
Our correspondent report that the APC was excluded from all elections in Zamfara State on account of the internal crisis that enveloped the party ahead of the 2019 election.
Dr. Musa who is counsel to Hon. Habeeb Baba Sheriff Idenobemhe and three others in the suit against the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP in suit no FHC/ABJ/CS/1618/2020 averred thus:
“We want to bring to your notice the pendency of this suit in which Originating Summons and Motion for Interlocutory injunction were served on the Peoples Democratic Party and the Chairman of the party, sued as first and second defendants respectively.”
“The suit pertains to the protest against the illegality the Edo State Chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party is angling to embark upon in the name of a strange “harmonization” aimed at truncating the tenure of elected Executive Officers of the Peoples Democratic Party at all levels in Edo State which runs contrary to the provisions of the party’s constitution.
Some of the elected officers who are to be affected by the purported hramonisation and who want to to have the provisions of the constitution of the party upheld and protected by all organs of the party approached the court for the protection of their rights after exhausting the available internal remedies.
“We believe that in this new Peoples Democratic Party, that Nigerians are expecting much from the defendants in this case will refrain from doing any act that will tamper with the res of this case and foist on the court a fait accompli.”
“Now that the matter is before a competent court of law to do any act will fetter the judicial power of the court or frustrate the due administration of justice in this case will amount to criminal contempt of court with its harsh attendant consequences.”
“We are bringing this to your attention because notwithstanding the pendency of this suit and the motion on notice, the Edo State chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP is pushing seriously to embark on the illegal harmonization.”
According to the report, the harmonization of the PDP in Edo State aimed at positioning allies of Governor Godwin Obaseki who came with him from the APC has caused an uproar among party activists.