Secondus: Unending travails of a PDP chairman

GODWIN EGBA, reports that the Peoples Democratic Party’s (PDP) National Chairman, Prince Uche Secondus, recently, has been in turbulent tide to complete his tenure in few months time, as calls for his resignation gathers  momentum. However, the BoT is not letting the resignation calls hold sway. As if that was not enough, a High Court in PortHarcourt pulled the rug of his feet.

The National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Prince Uche Secondus, is seemingly drowning in turbulent waters of his political ascendancy in his over 40 years as a politician. 

High pitch voices are calling for his resignation occasioned by his alleged incompetence and failure in his handling of the party affairs.

Blueprint searchlight on the on-going crisis, showed the embattled party chairman is, however, taking protection under the support of some strong sections of the party organs, especially the Board of Trustees, including the PDP Governors Forum, who are seemingly emboldened by the chairman’s categorical statement that he would not resign.

Reasons for resignation calls 

The Secondus-must-go voices have hinged their accusation against him on the following reasons:

First, that the PDP under his watch had lost significant grounds from a 17 states control to a mere 10 states control and that he seemed to have no answer to the steady defection of governors of the party and of other high ranking members to the ruling party, thereby dimishing the fortunes and the desired impact of the main opposition party in the 2023 elections.

Secondly, the above school of thought argued that the failures and non-performance of the ruling party which the PDP should capitalise upon to seize power from APC in 2023, the PDP cannot afford to condone or overlook such alleged incompetence of the flamboyant party chief.

However, those on the side of Secondus against his adversaries insist he be allowed to complete his term in December which is just over three months away, even though those calling for his head are saying his resignation should be immediate, adding that three or four months was a long time enough for more damage to be done to the party’s expectations and interest in 2023.

But there are, however, equally strong voices, individuals and groups, that are against the resignation of Secondus.

These groups are those who describe the embattled party chairman as an experienced politician dating back to upward of forty years when he served as national youth leader in the defunct National Party of Nigeria (NPN) during the Shehu Shagari era.

They attested that Secondus had served as Organising secretary of the PDP in Rivers state, National Organising Secretary of the PDP, Deputy National Chairman of the PDP, regretting that those advancing the cause of Secondus are looking at his extensive political experience, noting that nothing should blind party members to that fact.

Yet some observers seem to have taken sides with Secondus antagonists as they agreed that time is so short in politics that even one hour is long enough for things to happen and that it was better for change, if necessary, to take place immediately, instead of condoning an alleged non-performing chairman to remain in office till the expiry of his tenure.

Meanwhile there have been accusations and counter-accusations, in toxic language, between the pros and the cons of the Secondus debate on national television and the print media.

Last Monday, a group known as Save PDP Group, organized an anti-Secondus protest, calling for his sack.

Addressing newsmen at the national secretariat of the party Wadata Plaza in Abuja, leader of the group Comrade Tamunotinye Inioribo accused Secondus  of polarizing the party for his own selfish interest, saying he was to blame “for the defection of three governors and dozens of senators from the party”.

Secondus’ pillar of support

Among PDP governors known to be sympathetic to Secondus is immediate past governor of Baylesa state, Senator Serake Dickson who is in favour of allowing the Chairman spend out his tenure by December.

A statement by his media aide on Monday, said “Those tiny minority call ing for the resignation of the chairman should come clean and tell party members across the country his offence why he should resign”.

The situation is not like dagger drawn. Will Secondus resign in the face of the strong accusation against him or will he not resign in the face of the strong defence in his favour by his supporters.

Observers are say that the managers of the party should make serious efforts to assuage frayed nerves and discourage possible litigations which may adversely affect the party’s calculations for 2023.

Rivers federal lawmaker joins resignation calls

A Port-Harcourt based local paper reported its in depth finding that: “Ahead of the 2023 general elections, and to ensure a brighter and stronger footing for the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), to reposition for the necessary victory over the clueless All Progressives Congress (APC) – led federal government, the federal lawmaker representing Khana/Gokana Federal Constituency in the National Assembly, Rt Hon. Dumnamene Robinson Dekor urged the incumbent PDP National  Chairman, Prince Uche Secondus to resign honourably.

Rt. Hon. Dekor, Chairman House Committee on Host Communities said there could not be a better time for the Prince Uche Secondus-led PDP to quit than now for a more focused leadership to be put in place.

The federal lawmaker who was also a one time Deputy Speaker of Rivers state House of Assembly, and Commissioner for Works hinged his call for Prince Secondus resignation on what he described as heading a ‘visionless leadership’.

The Ogoni born politician noted with dismay the ceaseless conflicts, bickering and defections that has  characterised the Uche Secondus administration, positing that the earlier his leadership is replaced the better for PDP.

According to the lawmaker, the PDP is the only hope Nigerians have for survival in view of the economic quagmire the APC has plunged the country into, and cannot afford to go in for the 2023 general elections under a leadership that cannot deliver.

The National PDP leadership as presently constituted, he said, “does not have all it takes to reclaim the party’s mandate under the prevailing political realities in the country.”

He further said, “All we need is a leadership that has grassroots supports across the breadth and length of the nation and not a leadership that is polarised. It’s therefore very imperative to do the needful and this is the time”. Rt. Hon Dekor declared.

Secondus himself had vowed not to resign. He pointed out that nothing so far warrants his resignation, urging those fighting him to come clean.

He said such people must tell members of the party across the country his offence and why he should resign.

He said, “those tiny minority calling for my resignation should come clean and tell party members across the country his offence why he should resign.”

Now PortHarcourt High Court

Just last Monday, a High Court in Port Harcourt, Rivers state restrained Prince Secondus from parading himself as the national chairman of PDP.

In an interim order with suit number PHC/2183/ CS/ 2021, dated 23rd August 2021, Honourable Justice (Dr), O. Gbasam “restrained the 1st defendant (Secondus) from parading himself as a member of the 2nd defendant (PDP) or National Chairman of the defendant or performing the functions of the national chairman of the 2nd defendant or calling, attending or presiding over any meeting of the 2nd defendant, or any committee of the 2nd defendant at the ward, local government or state level or calling for any ward, local government or state congresses of the 2nd defendant or setting up committees for such congresses, or participate in any activity of the 2nd defendant whatsoever whilst on suspension as a member of the 2nd defendant pending the hearing and determination of the motion on notice for an interlocutory injunction”.

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