A group within the Lagos State chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party, Concerned PDP Elders and Stakeholders, on Sunday, asked the national leadership of the party to suspend the immediate past Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, Senator Musiliu Obanikoro, and the newly-appointed acting Chairman of the party in the state, Mr. Kamaldeen Olorunoje.
The group, in a statement signed by its coordinator, Lanre Hassan, alleged that both Obanikoro and Olorunoje were engaging in anti-party activities capable of distracting the party at the Lagos State Election Petitions Tribunal.
The group claimed that Olorunoje forced the suspended chairman of the party, Capt. Tunji Shelle (retd.) out of the PDP secretariat, using thugs and policemen.
Shelle was on May 11, 2015 sacked by 34 members of the party’s state working committee.
The committee accused Shelle of mismanaging election campaign funds and manipulating the party’s primaries last year. Both Shelle and Olorunoje had been locked in a battle over the leadership of the party.
The group said, “Both Obanikoro and Olorunoje are determined to distract the party at this important period that the party is seeking redress at the Election Petitions Tribunal due to their anti-party agenda and this will not be accepted.
“Even though the party would be overhauled, it is not Obanikoro’s call but that of the stakeholders he met in the party.
“Tunji Shelle remains the party Chairman and is so recognised until the congress comes up. Olorunoje’s action is illegal and an act of brigandage which will not be tolerated. He is to vacate the office immediately or face forceful ejection.”
The group also warned Obanikoro to forget any governorship ambition in 2019, saying that the party would present a good candidate if the governorship candidate of the party in the last election, Jimi Agbaje, decides not to contest.
“No policeman should go to the PPD secretariat again. This is a political matter and the party constitution is quite clear on it. We, hereby, call for the arrest of Olorunoje. He does not have the charisma to lead the party.”
When contacted to react to the allegations, Olorunoje promised to get back to our correspondent but he had yet to do so as of the time of filing this report.