By Emmanuel Oloniruha
Following recent settlement of its leadership rift, the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) National Executive Committee has fixed non-elective national convention for Aug. 12, in Abuja.
Mr Dayo Adeyeye, the National Publicity Secretary of PDP National Caretaker Committee, announced the decision after the NEC meeting held on Tuesday in Abuja.
Adeyeye said the decision was to enable the party to meet the Independent National Electoral Commission’s (INEC) requirement on national conventions of political parties.
The PDP National Caretaker Committee was set up in Port Harcourt on May 21, 2016.
The tenure of the committee which lapsed on Aug. 16, 2016 was later extended by 12 months as it was unable to elect new officers at its Aug. 17, 2016 non-elective convention due to litigations.
“We have been in court since May 2016. So, the prolonged litigation of the national leadership tussle ended only last week on July 1, when the Supreme Court gave judgement in favour of the National Caretaker Committee.
“This left barely one month for the conduct of proper elective national convention.
“Considering the relevant statutory notice that we need to give to INEC and the requirements of the PDP Constitution 2012 (as amended)’’ it would be difficult to meet deadline.’’
He said it was practically impossible to have an elective national convention before Aug. 16 because they needed to give certain statutory notices to INEC.
“And our own (constitution) has some special provisions that we have to meet and there’s no time to meet up with those provisions.
“Therefore, NEC took a decision that in view of all the circumstances, NEC invoking the powers conferred on it under Section 31 (2a), decided to convene non-elective national convention on Aug. 12 in Abuja,’’ Adeyeye said.
He said NEC also dissolved that the party’s caretaker committees in Jigawa and Benue states, set up by the former Chairman of PDP, Ali Modu Sheriff, during the leadership tussle.
Adeyeye added that all state caretaker committees and state parallel executives set up after the Court of Appeal judgment of Feb. 17 at Port Harcourt were nullified.
“ You will recall that immediately after the Court of Appeal judgment on the 17th of February and March in Port Harcourt, which gave our victory to Sheriff, he went about installing caretaker committees in some, states, particularly in Jigawa and Benue States.
“The Ali Modu-Sheriff group then in authority set up caretaker committees in both Jigawa and Benue states and tinkered with the executives of some other states.
“So, we brought a motion before NEC today and the motion was duly passed; that is bringing normalcy back to the party, installing legality and constitutionality.’’
Adeyeye said NEC also set up standing disciplinary and reconciliation committees, not targeted at Sheriff but to settle disciplinary issues that rocked the party.
He added that the National Caretaker Committee had been directed to inaugurate the committees immediately.
“Finally, we took a decision on important constitution amendments that we intend to effect at the next elective national convention that will come up later in the year.
‘’`The constitutional amendment proposals have been circulated to relevant personalities and organs of the party,’’ Adeyeye said. (NAN)