PDP CRISIS UPDATES: New Faction Will Open Parallel Secretariat
A new faction that broke out of the ruling Peoples Democratic Party will open a parallel secretariat in the Maitama District of Abuja on Tuesday.
Chairman of the faction, Abubakar Kawu Baraje said on Monday morning that invitations would be sent out to the media on Monday afternoon preparatory to the opening of the new secretariat, Premium Times reports.
“Our plan is to address the media and announce the names of other members of our National Working Committee at our own secretariat,” Baraje said.
He said that the secretariat was ready and equipped with “the needed paraphernalia of office”.
Baraje however did not disclose the exact address of the new secretariat, saying that it would be contained in the invitation to be sent out to journalists later today.
History repeats itself?
Should the plan to open another secretariat be fulfilled, that would be the second time in PDP's history that the party would split into two formidable groups.
It will be recalled, that on June 9, 2006, a group led by the party’s founding Chairman, Solomon Lar, and a former Deputy National Chairman, Shuaib Oyedokun, had broken away to form a parallel faction after accusing the then Ahmadu Ali-led leadership of sidelining many leading founding members. The group then proceeded to open a new secretariat: a one-storey building of four flats lavishly decorated with flags of the party located in the Jabi District of Abuja.
The development rattled then President Olusegun Obasanjo who promptly deployed security agents to forcefully seal the parallel secretariat. By the following day, the Nigerian Police had closed the parallel secretariat and stationed 20 of its men at the complex to prevent members of the Lar group from gaining entry. The police said they did it to forestall an outbreak of violence.
The development irked the Lar group and sparked off a war of words between the two camps. The Lar group asked the then Inspector General of Police, Sunday Ehindero, to withdraw his men from its secretariat, threatening that it would forcefully chase the Ali-led group away from the Wadata Plaza national secretariat of the party if the police failed to allow it to operate from the Mabushi secretariat.
History now appears to be trying to repeat itself with the PDP descending into another full blown crisis Saturday with former Vice President Atiku Abubakar, seven state governors and other leading party members walking out of the Abuja convention and then addressing a press conference to say they had taken over the party. They now say they are ready to open a parallel secretariat in Maitama to rival the known PDP head office in the Wuse, Zone 5 District of Abuja.