Kwankwaso Allegedly Engaged in Anti-Party Activities, Summoned to Court
Rabiu Kwankwaso, the presidential candidate of the New Nigeria Peoples Party (NNPP) during the 2023 elections, is facing accusations of undermining the interests of his own party in the previous general elections.
The allegation stems from the collective claim made by the forum of state chairmen within the party.
According to the NNPP state chairmen, Kwankwaso has been attempting to seize control of the party’s internal framework. They further contend that he employed members of the National Working Committee (NWC) to orchestrate illicit actions and take decisions that are constitutionally questionable. This group of state chairmen has also charged the NWC with unlawfully dissolving the executive councils of the party across ten states in the country.
Addressing reporters in Ado-Ekiti, the spokesperson for the forum, Dada Olayinka Olabode, who also holds the position of Ekiti state chairman of NNPP, disclosed that they have initiated legal actions against both Kwankwaso and the NWC.
Olabode stated: “We have pursued legal avenues to rectify this perceived injustice against over 7,000 members who underwent congresses at ward, local government, and state levels in Ekiti state. Additionally, about 100,000 elected officials of our party across ten states, as well as two other states where expulsion has been declared, are affected. The Ado Ekiti Court has issued notice to the party, represented by the improperly constituted NWC, to appear on September 19, 2023. The case is before Justice Aladejana of High Court 3 in Ekiti State.”
He added: “These actions contravene Article 2a and blatantly violate Articles 32.1i, 39.0, 39.1i, and 39.4 of our party’s constitution. The same improperly constituted NWC has twice attempted to illicitly amend the party’s constitution.”
Kwankwaso’s Collaborations with Other Parties
Regarding the allegations of engaging in anti-party activities, Olabode accused Kwankwaso of collaborating with the then-candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, who now serves as the President of Nigeria.
Olabode asserted that this alliance negatively affected NNPP’s performance in the elections, as Kwankwaso allegedly attempted to control the party’s structures for personal gain.
“The association during that period leading up to the presidential election had a significant impact on the party’s performance across the board. The internal party conflict emerged due to Kwankwaso’s endeavor to commandeer the party’s structures after being confronted about his anti-party actions.”
Olabode also pointed out that investigative panels were convened without following the proper disciplinary procedures as stipulated in the party’s constitution. He claimed that accused individuals were neither provided with copies of the purported petitions against them nor given a fair hearing.
“The improperly constituted NWC then proceeded to make unconstitutional and illegal announcements on July 28th, asserting the dissolution of party structures across ten states, including Enugu, Ekiti, Kaduna, Niger, Zamfara, Rivers, and four others. We, representing these ten states, are here today to inform the world that the state chairmen lodged a complaint with the party’s founder and chairman of the board of trustees, Chief Boniface Okechukwu Aniebonam. He holds explicit authority to serve as the conscience and impartial arbitrator. After reviewing the petition, he advised that the unlawfully made decisions be reversed and that the dissolved executive committees be reinstated.”
Olabode concluded by cautioning the public to be wary of individuals who portray themselves as champions of democracy but have a history of political opportunism, frequently changing their affiliations between political parties.
“We stand firm as state chairmen, resolved to prevent these individuals from seizing our party. While efforts are being made to impose illegal caretaker committees in these states, we are prepared to defend our party’s integrity through every lawful means available.”
The NNPP state chairmen’s forum also emphasized that all interactions with the party should be coordinated through the chairman of the board of trustees, Chief Anibulam.