By Marie-Therese Nanlong – Jos
Reactions have continued to trail last weekend’s Plateau State Peoples Democratic Party, PDP Congress which brought on board the State Executive who would oversee the affairs of the party in the State.
The said Congress was initially delayed due to myriads of litigation against the party by aggrieved members which made the senator Suleiman Adokwe caretaker committee to be put in place to look into the issues raised.
The Adokwe committee which lasted for just six days supported the holding of the Congress despite the fact that 40 aspirants boycotted it barely 24 hours to its commencement.
“Adokwe handed over the leadership of the party to the newly elected executive with a task on them to reconcile all aggrieved members.
One of the aspirants for the chairmanship seat, Bitrus Kaze who was among those who boycotted the exercise in the latest reaction has called on genuine party members to reject what he termed, “crass illegality.”
According to him, “On Friday 28th August 2020, 40 aspirants (including my humble self) announced our boycott of the purported Plateau State PDP Congress scheduled for Saturday 29th August in Jos.
“I witnessed the Gov Ortom intervention of 19th August in Abuja where it was resolved inter alia that a new State Caretaker Committee (CTC) be constituted to review the litany of litigations that trailed the Hon Yakubu Choco regime preparatory to their withdrawal.
“A statement issued by the PDP National Publicity Secretary, Kola Ologbondiyan on 26th August announced the constitution of the Sen Suleiman Adokwe-led CTC to run the party for a period “not exceeding 90 days”.
“The new CTC took over around 8 pm on Thursday 27th August, without resolving any petition and after the resignation of two members, staged the purported State Congress within 48 hours. Prof Dimis Mailafiya and Hon Jacob Dashe earned our resounding applaud for towing the path of conscience.
“My crude understanding of some facts as at Friday 28th August is that; There is an uncontested court judgment which restrained the PDP from conducting any State Congress until the party congress is conducted in Jos North LGA.
“There were violations of the party guidelines for the conduct Of Ward, LGA, State, Zonal Congresses And The National Convention issued in January 2020.
“Any aspirant aggrieved by the decision of the Screening Committee may appeal in writing to the Screening Appeal Panel within 48 hours from the time of the announcement of the result of the screening and the Screening Appeal Panel shall pronounce its decision on the appeal within 48 hours from the receipt of the petition.
“The Screening Committee was not constituted, no screening result was displayed at the State Secretariat, the Screening Appeal Panel, as well as the State Congress Appeal Panel, were never constituted for Plateau.
“An agent was appointed for me in my absence to justify the 22 votes they dashed me just to ridicule me. People who were desperate to rehearse the State Congresses on 29th August never went for meet-the-delegates tour to any LGA.
“They are jittery in self-acclaimed “victory” like the Roman Pilate who despite vindicating Christ chose his throne over justice. Duty beckons on us to challenge the crass illegality.
“Make no mistake about it, it is costly but freedom is not free. I can easily forego my State Chairmanship ambition but our collective goal to restore fairness is not negotiable.”
Apart from Kaze, Senator Jeremiah Useni, among others have also frowned at the processes which brought the new Exco on board and may likely contemplate parallel leadership for the party.