From Rasaq Ibrahim, Ado-Ekiti
The All Progressives Congress (APC) in Ekiti State yesterday insisted that the Special Adviser to the President on Political Matters, Senator Babafemi Ojudu and 10 others remain suspended.
It said the indefinite suspension slammed on the bigwigs still subsists despite the pronouncement of the party’s national secretariat nullifying the action.
Ekiti APC had last week suspended Ojudu and 10 others for alleged disobedience, which rested on their failure to withdraw the case they instituted against the party as directed by the National Executive Council.
Others suspended alongside Ojudu were Ayo Ajibade, Oyetunde Ojo, Femi Adeleye, Bunmi Ogunleye, Akin Akomolafe, Bamigboye Adegoroye, Wole Oluyede, Olusoga Owoeye, Dele Afolabi and Toyin Oluwasola.
The sanction came following the report of the Patrick Ajigbolamu-led eight-man disciplinary committee set up to probe allegations of anti-party activities levelled against them.
But in a reprisal, Ojudu and his loyalists suspended Governor Kayode Fayemi and the State Working Committee, accusing him of destabilising the party.
The suspension and counter-suspension were, however, declared null and void by the caretaker committee of the party, leading to the setting up of a reconciliation committee chaired by Governor Nasir El-Rufai.
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Addressing reporters in Ado-Ekiti, the APC state Publicity Secretary, Ade Ajayi, said the suspension against Ojudu and others subsists.
He added that the El-Rufai reconciliation committee and the disciplinary committee set up at the state level, which recommended the suspension of Ojudu and others, were saddled with distinct responsibilities with no overlapping effect.
“Let me clarify here, it was only the suspension by the illegal body imposed on Governor Kayode Fayemi that was nullified and not the one that was carried out by the state disciplinary committee.
“The national body said it had not received the report of the disciplinary committee set up by the authentic APC in Ekiti as at when the pronouncement was made.
“But as I speak with you, the national body has received the report. It was as a result of the disobedience to the directive of the National Executive Committee and President Muhammadu Buhari that all cases be withdrawn from courts that we set up the disciplinary committee.”
Ajayi hoped that the Governor El-Rufail-led reconciliation committee would act on the report submitted by the Jide Awe-led committee set up by the State Working Committee to mediate in the crisis.
“There are two different issues, they are distinct and I don’t think there is conflict between what the committees by the national and state are to do.
“The Jide Awe-led committee submitted its report on September 29. We are confident that the committee set up by the national body will act on its recommendations.
“Don’t forget that the aggrieved people were provided the opportunities, but they refused to appear before the disciplinary and reconciliation committees set up by the party. It has always been our wish that we remain one family.”
Ajayi appealed to Ojudu and his group to cooperate with the reconciliation committee set up by the national body for unity to be restored.
“Let them come home and ventilate their anger. Let them use the party’s reconciliation mechanisms to settle this, so that we can remain united as we have ever been,” he said.
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