Layi Olanrewaju, Ilorin
Ahead the 2019 General Elections, the leadership crisis facing the Peoples Democracy Party (PDP) in Kwara State deepened Thursday as a faction of the party held a stakeholders meeting in Ilorin, the state capital.
At the crucial meeting, stakeholders resolved to use the consensus option in picking the party’s gubernatorial candidate for next year’s governorship election in the state.
Stakeholders also resolved to begin a tour of all 16 local government areas of the state next week to sensitise party members and residents on preparations for the 2019 General Elections.
Senator Suleiman Ajadi, the pioneer chairman of the party in the state, Barr. Kunle Suleiman, a party elder, Alh. Ayinla Folorunsho, chairman, Elders Forum,Chief S.A.Adedayo, pioneer national assistant publicity secretary of the party, Chief Henry Olaosebikan, Hon. llyasu Ibrahim, Barr. Moses Ibiyemi and Barr. Ashaolu, are some of the prominent personalities that attended the meeting.
Stakeholders of all the branches of the party in the state were in attendance at a meeting convened by a factional leader, Prince Sunday Fagbemi.
Fagbemi and four other chieftains of the PDP are in court challenging the election of Akogun Iyiola Oyedepo as the state chairman of the party. The Fagbemi group got a major boost last week when the Federal High Court, Ilorin, hearing the suit, dismissed all the six grounds of preliminary objections raised by Oyedepo and his co-defendants.
The court held that “on the whole, I find that the objections of the defendants are only unsustainable and are completely lacking in merit. This preliminary objection, therefore, fails on all grounds and its hereby dismissed.”
The Presiding Judge, Justice N.I Afolabi, further held that “from all facts and documentary evidence placed before the court, it is evident that there is in fact a cause of action established by the alleged irregularly conducted congress and the fact that the second to sixth defendants are alleged to have continued parading themselves as the state executive committee in spite of the decision of the Appeal Panel.
“It would appear to my mind, therefore, that there are serious and actionable issues placed before the court by the plaintiffs, and same are actionable against the defendants presently before the court.”
Speaking with newsmen after the PDP stakeholders meeting in Ilorin, Prince Sunday Fagbemi said the meeting was summoned to update members on the state of the party regarding its leadership. He said the stakeholders were briefed on the journey so far on the leadership crisis, and urged them to remain calm and allow the law take its course.
The factional leader urged PDP members across the state to start mobilising for votes ahead of the 2019 General Elections. He said the party was prepared to wrest power from the ruling APC in the state.