By; OLADELE ADEDAYO, Ado-Ekiti
As the leadership crisis rocking the Ekiti State chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) appears unresolved, the Special Assistant on Public Communications to the Senate Minority Leader, Senator Biodun Olujimi, Chief Sanya Atofarati has said his boss’ leadership is sacrosanct but described the immediate past Governor of the State, Mr. Ayodele Fayose as just elder-statesman and ceremonial leader of the party in Ekiti State.
Chief Sanya Atofarati however described as laughable the purported PDP ‘State Caucus’ meeting held in Ado- Ekiti where the group allegedly sat to back Fayose’s leadership.
Atofarati said the meeting lacked locus standi as it is unknown to the Constitution of the Peoples Democratic Party(PDP).
In his words; “I even learnt they earlier had a meeting at Afao-Ekiti where they were given a script and were mandated on what and what to say. In a saner clime, the Oguntuase-led state executives that were alleged of misappropriation could not have been allowed to Preside as Chairman of the purported meeting.
“Those who think Senator Olujimi is out to muscle their paymaster should be properly guided by the provisions of Section 30 subsection (d) and Section 31 subsection (e) of the PDP Constitution as to know who and who is a member of the National Caucus and National Executive Council respectively.
“For instance, few months ago when the Senate President, Senator Bukola Saraki decamped to PDP, he was announced the National leader of the party. Whereas, the likes of the former President Goodluck Jonathan, his Deputy Alhaji Namadi Sambo,the deputy Senate President Senator Ike Ekweremadu who are still members of the PDP all respected the provisions of the Constitution which bestowed the leadership of the party on Senator Saraki being the highest ranking officer of the party. So,debating Ekiti as peculiar issue is needless.
“The point here is that the former Governor Ayo Fayose is an elder statesman and a ceremonial leader especially in PDP but unfortunately that does not translate to the party leadership as clearly stated in the sections of the party’s constitution cited above.”
Meanwhile,the Party State Caucus,the highest decision making organ at the State level had at the weekend reportedly reaffirmed former Governor Ayodele Fayose as leader of the party and declared the Chief Gboyega Oguntuase-led Exco as the only recognized Exco of the party in the State.
The Caucus meeting was said to have been called consequent upon the controversies over a meeting held on Saturday, November 3, in which the Senate Minority Leader, Biodun Olujimi was pronounced as leader of the party and call was made for the dissolution of the State Exco.
,However,the former Secretary of the party, Dr. Tope Aluko,who was the arrow head of the controversial meeting,was said to have attended the Saturday’s meeting.
The meeting was also said to have been attended by former Deputy Governor and governorship candidate of the PDP in the July 14 governorship election in the State, Prof. Kolapo Olusola; his running mate, Alhaji Kazeem Deji Ogunsakin; former Speaker, Hon. Kola Oluwawole; the State Party Chairman, Chief Gboyega Oguntuase and other members of the State Exco.
Apart from Senator Olujimi, the six PDP National Assembly members from Ekiti State reportedly attended the meeting.
They were the Senator representing Ekiti North, Duro Faseyi, as well as House of Representatives members, Kehinde Agboola (Ekiti North I), Thaddeus Aina (Ekiti North II), Ayo Oladimeji (Ekiti Central I), Segun Adekola (Ekiti South I) and Akin Awodumila (Ekiti South II).
Three former State Chairmen of the party who attended the meeting were Chief J. A. Ademuagun, Chief Bola Olu-Ojo and Chief Idowu Faleye while two Board of Trustees (BOT) members; Chief Bisi Kolawole and Hon. Tunji Akinyele also attended.
In the communique signed by Prof. Olusola, Senator Faseyi, Hon. Kehinde Agboola, Chief Ademuwagun and Hon. Akinyele, the party declared total support for the presidential candidacy of Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, saying that “members and supporters of the party in Ekiti State will work assiduously to win the 2019 general elections,most especially the presidential poll.”
The meeting reportedly laid to rest the status of Dr. Temitope Aluko in the party, declared him as a bonafide member of the party in the State and also directed that all members of the party that defected to other parties for one reason or the other and are willing to return to the party should be embraced and accorded their due recognition.
At the meeting,it was learnt that two committees were set up to look into the party account and secretariat as well as House of Assembly matters,Oladimeji was appointed to chair the committee on party account and secretariat with Aluko, Mrs Titi Owoseni and Chief Bola Olu-Ojo as members while Dare Omotosho will serve as Secretary.
The committee to look into the House of Assembly matters is chaired by the Prof. Olusola with Chief Bisi Kolawole as secretary.
Other members are Senator Biodun Olujimi, Chief Dipo Anisulowo, Chief Idowu Odeyemi, Michael Ayodele, Senator Duro Faseyi, Kehinde Agboola and (Mrs) Abeni Olayinka.
It said the party members in the State House of Assembly must henceforth consult with the committee chairman before taking any further decisions.
The Party State Caucus also called on all the party members and supporters to remain steadfast,noting that the party was sure of victory at the ongoing Governorship Election Petitions Tribunal.