THE Ahmed Makarfi-faction of the Peoples Democratic Party has said that the Independent National Electoral Commission has no basis to recognise the candidate of the Ali Modu Sheriff group of the party for the forthcoming Edo governorship election.
The National Publicity Secretary of the Makarfi-led PDP, Prince Dayo Adeyeye, told newsmen in Port Harcourt on Saturday that the governorship candidate of the party ahead of the Edo poll remained Osagie Ize-Iyamu.
Adeyeye, who decried the indiscriminate manner the judiciary was churning out orders in the PDP crisis as dangerous to democracy, said that Sheriff was removed by the PDP National Convention in line with the party’s constitution.
Explaining that the amendment of the PDP Constitution only allowed the national deputy chairman of the party to take over in the absence of a substantive chairman, Adeyeye maintained that Sheriff should not have been made the acting chairman of the party.
“In Edo, the Sheriff faction is saying INEC must recognise the candidate submitted by it (Sheriff faction). How would INEC take something from a man that is only a busybody to the party?
“If a court had ruled that Sheriff is not the chairman of the PDP, how then would a court say that INEC should recognise a candidate recognised by Sheriff,” Adeyeye further queried.
The Makarfi-led PDP national publicity secretary wondered why Sheriff would continue to parade himself as the PDP chairman when a National Convention had removed him.
On the series of court orders issued over the crisis in the party, Adeyeye said, “When has it become the tradition for courts to choose executive members of a party?
“Sheriff is saying that he is the national chairman of the PDP by a court order even when the governors and other members of the party have rejected him. Some people are trying to use the judiciary to destroy Nigeria’s democracy.
“An example is what is playing out in Abia State. But we are not going to allow our nation’s democracy to be destroyed. Nigeria has become a laughing stock and we must sensitise people to this because it (indiscriminate court injunctions) is a new development.
“People are trying to manipulate the judiciary for their own gains and this is dangerous for democracy. The PDP National Convention is supreme and Sheriff has no legal basis to parade himself as the PDP national chairman,” he added.
Adeyeye, however, described the governorship elections in Edo and Ondo states as litmus tests for INEC, adding that Nigerians were not interested in inconclusive elections.