by Oge Okonkwo
Former governor of Osun state and secretary of the new faction of the Peoples Democratic Party, Olagunsoye Oyinlola, said his group falsely led the authorities into believing they were planning a wedding at a venue they would later use in declaring the new faction.
The venue, Shehu Yar’Adua Centre in Abuja, would have been closed down by government officials if they had been aware and haven fallen for the trick, stayed clear of the compound, allowing the faction led by Abubakar Baraje and Mr Oyinlola, to declare rival faction of the PDP.
“They would have sealed the place off the way they did to our party secretariat, but we beat them to it by booking the venue for wedding without making our intention known,” Mr Oyinlola said on Sunday while addressing party supporters in his home state of Osun.
Premium Times news reports:
The group’s office in Maitama Abuja was sealed off by the police weekend, a week after that incident. The office has since remained closed despite condemnations and calls for its reopening.
Mr Oyinlola spoke in Okuku, his hometown, on Sunday, as the PDP’s crisis continues. He insisted his faction of the party has the authentic executive. During his speech, he repeatedly referred to Bamanga Tukur, the chairman of the President Goodluck Jonathan-led faction of the PDP, as “former chairman”.
The PDP had descended into unprecedented crisis August 31 when a group led by former Vice President Atiku Abubakar and seven of the party’s 23 governors walked out of the party’s special convention in Abuja and then announced at a press conference that it had taken over the party.
At a press briefing in Abuja, Abubakar Kawu Baraje, a former acting National Chairman of the PDP, was announced as leader of the new faction of the party and Mr. Oyinlola as secretary.
The party leaders said they took the decision to salvage the PDP from those who have hijacked it.
Both feuding parties have held several reconciliation meetings but the crisis has so far defied resolution with parties holding on tenaciously to their position.