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PDP Crisis: Deputy National Chairman, Danagum takes over from Ayu in acting capacity

Dr. Iyorchia Ayu, PDP

By Tunde Opalana

Barely 24 hours after a Benue State High Court barred Dr. Iyorchia Ayu from parading himself as national chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), the deputy chairman (North), Ambassador Umar Ilya Damagum took over as acting chairman.

Damagum was unveiled to the press after an emergency meeting of the National Working Committee (NWC) at the PDP national secretariat on Tuesday.

National Publicity Secretary, Hon. Debo Ologunagba said the NWC acted in line with the principle of the party as a law abiding entity to respect the order of the court asking Ayu to set aside.

According to him, the NWC on behalf of the National Executive Committee (NEC) ratified the appointment of Ambassador Damagum as acting national chairman pending the determination of the suit against the former chairman .

The NPS said “the National Working Committee (NWC) of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) at an emergency meeting today, Tuesday, March 28, 2023 acknowledge the Order of the Benue State High Court, dated March 27, 2023 with regards to the Chairmanship position of our great Party.

“After a careful consideration of the Court Order and in line with Section 45 (2) of the Constitution of the PDP (as amended in 2017), the NWC resolved that the Deputy National Chairman (North) His Excellency, Amb. Umar Ililya Damagum assumes the National Chairmanship of our Party in acting capacity with effect from today, Tuesday, March 28, 2023.”

The NWC charged all leaders, critical stakeholders, teeming members and supporters of the party to remain calm and united at this critical time.

In a short acceptance speech, the acting chairman said he will be in office in acting capacity pending the determination of the suit challenging Ayu’s authority to act as PDP national chairman.

On what will be the way forward for the party Damagum said a meeting of the NWC will soon be conveyed to review situation on ground and keep members abreast of developments as they unfold.

When asked about the presence of Ayu at the party secretariat earlier in the day, Ambassador Damagum said “didn’t he have the right to come and pick his personal belongings from office?.

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