A factional Peoples Democratic Party, (PDP) governorship candidate in Ogun State, Senator Buruji Kashamu and his deputy, Dr. Reuben Abati have said that they remained the legal and constitutional candidates of the embattled party in the state.
The duo spoke against the backdrops of their recognition by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), as against the national leadership’s of the party’s support for the governorship ambition of Hon. Ladi Adebutu.
Kashamu, during a press conference in Lagos over the weekend, dismissed the purported support of the PDP National Working Committee, (NWC) for Adebutu.
The candidate vowed that despite the opposition of the PDP NWC to his ambition, he would not give up on his mandate.
“The fact must be reiterated that in spite of the shenanigan of the National Working Committee, Reuben Abati and I are the lawful governorship and deputy governorship candidates of the PDP. In a case filed by Ladi Adebutu himself, the FCT High Court on the 14th of January, 2019, held that although the national leadership of the PDP is the right body to conduct primaries, it was done in flagarant disobedience of subsisting court judgement in pur favour.
“The Ogun PDP matter is ordinarily an easy issue to resolve if the national leadership were to be law-abiding and unbiased. It is legitimate for politicians to be ambitious but not to go about it with impunity and lawlessness.
“Unfortunately for these undemocratic elements, the original PDP structure was proactive in approaching the court of law for protection of its rights as enshrined in the PDP and the Nigerian Constitutions. It is the High Court judgments from litigations in 2016/2017, which are still subsisting and binding on INEC and PDP as parties to the suit, that the Secondus-led PDP NWC has been striving to circumvent.
”There is practically nothing that they have not done; from constituting a national convention, to purportedly dissolving the valid Ogun State PDP exco in disobedience to valid court judgements and unlawful expulsion of party leaders. You will recall that their so-called expulsion has been nullified by the FCT High Court.
“Efforts at appeal of the judgements have largely been unsuccessful having been dismissed at the Appeal Court. This has made them to institute multiple ancillary cases in abuse of court processes. One of such is the judgment of the Court of Appeal in Ibadan
“It is also expedient to refer to the findings of the Court of Appeal at page 12 wherein the court held as follows: ‘The action instituted at the Lower Court is also not in respect of selection or nomination of candidates to represent the 1st Appellant at an election nor is it a complaint against any election, decision or activity of the INEC (10th Respondent). It is in my view, simply an inter-party dispute between two factions of the party as to which of the factions is the legitimate state executive of the PDP in Ogun State.
“This appeal is therefore not in respect of the pre-election matter’.The findings and decision of the Court of Appeal in the judgment of December 18, 2018, clearly shows that the subject of the said appeal was neither related to pre-election issues nor the nomination of candidates to represent the Ogun State PDP at the election.
“Therefore, since the said appeal and judgement do not relate to the list of candidates that would represent the Ogun State PDP at the election, the Court of Appeal could not have sacked or pronounced on the list of candidates from Ogun State. Ladi Adebutu was not a party to the Appeal, how can he claim to be a beneficiary of the judgment?” Kashamu asked rhetorically.