Umar Damagum, acting national chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), says Nyesom Wike, minister of the federal capital territory (FCT), and other members involved in “anti-party” acts, will be sanctioned “at the right time”.
Damagum said this on Tuesday while fielding questions from journalists after an emergency meeting of the PDP national working committee (NWC).
The PDP chairman said no member is bigger than the party and that action will be taken against anyone involved in alleged anti-party activity.
“Our stand about Wike — I have always said this thing that as long as you are a member of the PDP — there is a time for everything,” he said.
“My duty is to stabilise this party and not to cause crisis and I will continue to do that within the confines of reason.
“When things go out of hand, we will act. But meanwhile, we still see it within the ambit of the law. Mind you, we have other litigation going on in this party and we won’t want to plunge our party into another crisis.
“And let me tell you something, it’s not only Wike. There are other people who worked against this party.
“When we get to that level we will sanction everybody. If Wike believes he is above this party, we will be able to show him that he is not above this party.”
Damagum said that the party has constituted a panel to probe those involved in the anti-party activities.
The PDP national chairman said the panel would present a report and recommend appropriate sanctions to be taken against errant members.
“They are to review what happened in 2023 (election) and come out with a report not only about one person, but every person who has in one way or another engaged in anti-party. Then after that, we will see what kind of measure to take,” Damagum said.
THE LINGERING IMBROGLIO
During the buildup to the 2023 elections, Wike led a group of five PDP governors at the time, known as G5, who worked against Atiku Abubakar, the party’s candidate in the presidential poll.
Abubakar eventually lost the election to President Bola Tinubu.
Wike subsequently took up a ministerial post in Tinubu’s administration.
In August, Wike said nobody can suspend him as a member of PDP, amid calls from some members for disciplinary action to be taken against him.
Wike is at the centre of the political crisis in Rivers state.
In recent weeks, there has been a power tussle between Siminalayi Fubara, governor of Rivers, and Wike, leading to divisions in the state’s political landscape.
The conflict extended to the Rivers house of assembly, polarising the legislature.
Amid the political crisis, some commissioners resigned from Fubara’s cabinet while the house of assembly declared vacant the seats of 27 members who dumped the PDP for the All Progressives Congress (APC).
Wike and Fubara were political allies before they fell apart.
By Samuel Akpan
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