The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has rubbished the purported suspension of some party leaders in Rivers State.
The PDP said they considered petitions by Senator George Sekibo and former Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives Austin Opara before arriving at their decision to caution officials of the PDP in Rivers state.
In a statement by Debo Ologunagba, the National Publicity Secretary, the party said ward Excos lack the power to discipline members of the party.
“The attention of the National Working Committee (NWC) of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has been drawn to the purported suspension of Senator Dr George Thompson Sekibo and Rt. Hon. Dr Austin Adiele Opara from the Party, reportedly by the Ward Executives of Ward 2 of Ogu/Bolo Local Government Area and Ward 10 of Port Harcourt City Local Government Area of Rivers State, respectively.
“The NWC, after a thorough consideration of the petitions by Senator Sekibo and Rt. Hon. Austin Opara, dated April 17, 2023, against their purported suspension, hereby declares the action by the said Ward Executives, which borders on issues of discipline, null and void and of no effect, not being consistent with the provisions of the Constitution of the PDP (As amended in 2017).
“For clarity, Section 57 (7) provides that Notwithstanding any other provision relating to discipline, no Executive Committee, at any level except the National Executive Committee, shall entertain any question of discipline as may relate or concern a member of the National Executive Committee, Deputy Governor or member of the National Assembly”.
“The NWC, therefore, charges all leaders, critical stakeholders, members, teeming supporters of our Party in Rivers State and the general public to disregard the purported suspension of Senator Dr George Thompson Sekibo and Rt. Hon. Dr. Austin Adiele Opara.
“The NWC enjoins all Party members in Rivers State to remain united and continue to work together in the overall interest of our Party and the Nation,” the party said.