By Uche Amunike
The campaign team of the of the Presidential flag bearer of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) for the 2023 general election, Atiku Abubakar, has stated, amidst the PDP crisis being faced by the party, reasons why the national chairman of the party, Iyiorcha Ayu cannot be sacked now.
For months now, the PDP, whose camp is loyal to Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State, has continually faced internal crisis, in its bid to get Ayu to resign as national chairman in order to replace him with someone from the south, believing that by so doing, the imbalance in the leadership of the party would be addressed.
However, one of the spokespersons of the Atiku Campaign, Charles Aniagwu has said that the PDP was considering other options in order to solve the PDP crisis rocking the peace of the party.
According to him, the PDP was reconsidering the issues based on what was allowed by the laws guiding the party.
He made this known during an interview on Arise TV, Saturday, maintaining that if Ayu was sacked, it would cause constitutional PDP crisis, which would in turn, bring about bigger problems than the ones presently rocking the party’s boat.
He stated that the major issue being demanded by the stakeholders was the resignation of the National Chairman, but that it had been overtaken by that it was no longer an option, since the National Executive Committee (NEC) of the party passed a Vote of Confidence on him.
His words: ‘People may misinterpret it to mean calling the bluff of certain stakeholders but that is far from it because the party leadership examined the issues vis-a-vis the provisions of the party’s constitution as amended in 2017,’ Mr Ayu said.
‘When you look at that constitution, there are principal officers called the National Working Committee of the party led by the National Chairman and in the other of hierarchy, the Deputy National Chairman who must also come from same zone with the National Chairman is next in line’.
‘The third in line is the National Secretary and when you look at these positions, the National Chairman is from the North, the second in command is also from the North by virtue of the provision of the party’s constitution’.
‘In section 45 of the party’s constitution, in the event of removal or resignation of the National Chairman, the National Deputy Chairman takes over and acts in the position of that National Chairman pending when the party is able to organise another election or do a NEC meeting to be able to take a decision as to how to rearrange the hierarchy of the party.”
Mr Aniagwu said because the positions were elective positions, even if Mr Ayu were to step down for power to come to the South, the provisions of the constitution of the party would also be offended.
‘That can only happen if you can also take a decision to remove the Deputy National Chairman of the party who the lot immediately falls on by provisions of the law’.
‘Even if the party is able to solve that puzzle by bringing both National Chairman and Deputy to South, the third person in the hierarchy of the National Working Committee of the party is the National Secretary and that is in the South specifically Senator Samuel Anyanwu from Imo State’.
‘Now if you decide to bring this two positions to the South, have you also made arrangements to take the National Secretary to the North?’
‘Because of these legal impediments the party examined it that given the time that we have which is just about six months to the general elections, that it may likely snowball into some form of crisis that could trigger a whole lot of discomfort within the party if we proceed to begin to make these changes that there is the tendencies that the party may be embroiled in a crisis that would be worse than the one we are seeing at the moment’.