Lagos PDP crisis: Suspended secretary, others to face disciplinary committee Monday

• l am not aware of any invite, Gani reacts

Suspended officers of Lagos State chapter of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), including its secretary, Mr Muiz Shodipe; the spokesperson, Barrister Taofik Gani and an Ex-Officio member, Mr Nurudeen Adewale are billed to appear on Monday before a disciplinary committee of the party, to defend themselves of various allegations levelled against them.

A release made available to newsmen on Sunday indicated that invitation letters dated December 15, 2020, and signed by the Committee Secretary, Barr. Mustapha Ahmed Okandeji, had already been received by the trio.

It would be recalled that the State Chairman of PDP, Engr Adedeji Doherty, had said in a statement last Wednesday, that the trio of Shodipe, Gani and Adewale were accused of “consistently and flagrantly breaching major provisions of the party constitution and have been found to have involved themselves in anti-party activities which could cause disunity among party faithful.”

Present at the meeting, where they were suspended were 35 Exco members who voted in favour of the decision and 18 out of 20 Local Government party chairmen who also voted in favour of the decision.

The State Secretary, Shodipe was accused of calling and attending an illegal meeting where the chairman, Doherty, was purportedly removed as against the party constitution while the suspended Publicity Secretary was accused of issuing press statement, lying that the chairman had resigned.

The secretary, Shodipe, in the invitation letter, was accused of “disseminating false and misleading information about the party with an intention to bring the name of the party to disrepute in the eyes of right-thinking members of the party and the General Public,” among others.

Gani, in the letter inviting him, was accused of working in collaboration with the State Secretary, Shodipe, by consistently sending invitations for State Executive meetings in different locations in Lagos without consulting with members of the State Executive Committee and the state chairman.

“That you (Taofik Gani) sent out invites and went on a rampage on the 23rd of August 2020. You called for a State Working Committee and State Executive meetings at the state secretariat slated for Monday 24th August 2020 without due constitutional consultation or approval from the state chairman or State Executive Committee.

“That you (Taofik Gani) granted a press interview wherein he declared Mr. Gbadamosi (aspirant for Lagos East Senatorial) as the elected flag bearer of the party in a faraway 2023 gubernatorial contest which prejudices the interest of other prospective future aspirants to the said office.

“That you (Taofik Gani) have failed to use the office of the publicity secretary to launder the image of the party but rather to demarket the party and diminish the integrity of the party as a viable alternative to the ruling party in Lagos State. You went on to the media to describe the COVID-19 palliative initiative of the party to assist the less privileged in Lagos during the pandemic as a ‘Fraud’ or ‘419.’

“That you (Taofik Gani) absent yourself from all SWC, State Executive meetings of the party and other official duties for more than six (6) months without any apology.

“In view of the above, you are hereby invited to appear before the State Disciplinary Committee meeting to defend yourself of the aforesaid allegations on Monday, the 21st of December, 2020 at the state secretariat at No. 56, Adekunle Fajuyi Crescent Ikeja, Lagos State at 10 am prompt.

“Take notice that the provisions of the Constitution of Federal Republic of Nigeria (1999 as Amended) and the provisions of Chapter 10, section 57(1), (2), (3), (4) and (5) of the constitution of our great party (2017 Amended) guarantee fair hearing. Please, be assured of our esteemed regards always,” the letter read.

Reacting, the party’s spokesperson, Barrister Gani, described the report of his receipt of the invite to face a disciplinary committee as fake, saying he would be very glad to have the letter and indeed the date, time, venue well known.

“My attention has been drawn to a fake report about my receipt of an invitation to face a disciplinary panel on a so-called suspension. I will be very glad to have the letter and indeed the date, time, venue well known,” he said.

Gani, in a signed statement made available to the Nigerian Tribune, urged Lagosians and teeming party faithful to instead sympathise with the suspended Engnr Doherty, describing him as the worst detractor of Lagos PDP, even as he declared that he (Doherty) would “very soon face the mass of members to defend all his atrocities to this party.”

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