I remain PDP governorship candidate in Ogun – Kashamu
Lagos – Sen. Buruji Kashamu has urged the National Working Committee (NWC) of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to respect the court judgment pronouncing him the party’s governorship candidate in Ogun.
Sen. Buruji Kashamu
Kashamu (PDP-Ogun East) spoke with newsmen on Saturday in Lagos in reaction to a statement credited to the party’s Publicity Secretary, Mr Kola Ologbodiyan, that the PDP would only recognise Mr Ladi Adebutu as candidate.
Both Adebutu, a member of the House of Representatives, and Kashamu had been locked in litigation over the party’s ticket as they both emerged from two parallel congresses.
But the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) had on Jan. 17 published the names of National Assembly candidates who belong to the Bayo Dayo-led state executive as the right PDP candidates in Ogun.
Kashamu emerged from the congress conducted by the Dayo-led group while Adebutu emerged from the congress conducted by the Sikirulai Ogundele-led faction and backed by the NWC.
Mr Festus Okoye, INEC National Commissioner for Information, Media and Voter Education, had said on Wednesday in Abeokuta that the commission published candidates in Kashamu’s camp in compliance with a subsisting court judgment pronouncing them as the right candidates.
“Our position is that INEC received judgment of properly constituted courts of law and we have given effect to the judgment we have.
“The judgment asked us to recognise the list of candidates submitted by a faction of PDP in Ogun State.
“We have recognised candidates submitted by that political party and we have published the names recognised by the courts,’’ he said.
Ologbodiyan, however, told newsmen in Abuja on Thursday that Adebutu remained the candidate of the party inspite of INEC’s publication of names in the Kashamu group.
He said Adebutu was duly nominated by the party and asked INEC to name Adebutu instead of Kashamu as candidate.
“The PDP charges INEC Chairman to note that since the ruling of the Court of Appeal validating Adebutu as the PDP governorship candidate in Ogun State, no other court had overturned the extant ruling.
“INEC is therefore compelled to obey the law. It cannot choose to obey and cannot operate in waiting, anticipation and contemplation of a non-existent consideration in the conduct of the Ogun state governorship election,” he said.
But reacting, Kashamu said he remained the governorship candidate of the party as declared by a Federal High Court in Abuja on Jan.14, insisting that the verdict was binding on the party and INEC.
He said the judgment had not been vacated by any court and that INEC had acted according to the law by recognising only the results of the congress that produced him as candidate.
Kashamu said the Court of Appeal judgment that the NWC was latching on was not about the list of candidates nor was it related to pre-election matters.
“I am the lawful governorship candidate of the PDP in Ogun State for now. I am the candidate known to the law and the majority of party leaders and members.
“I am God’s candidate and the candidate of the masses.
“In a case filed by Ladi Adebutu himself, the FCT High Court on the 14th of January, 2019, held that that though the national leadership of the PDP is the right body to conduct primaries, it was done in flagrant disobedience of subsisting court judgment in our favour.
“I have all along been constrained by the commendable interventions of some of our well-informed and worthy national leaders from these embarrassing antics of the national leadership of PDP to openly challenge the supremacy of the rule of law in their handling of the Ogun State PDP matter.
“However, Thursday’s press conference of fallacy by the National Publicity Secretary of the PDP makes these clarifications unavoidable.
“It is also expedient to refer to the findings of the Court of Appeal at