25 June 2024

NTC, Obidients Regret Elected LP Lawmakers’ Stance in Party’s Trying Times, Commend Faithful Ones

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NTC, Obidients Regret Elected LP Lawmakers’ Stance in Party’s Trying Times, Commend Faithful Ones

 

The Labour Party (LP) National Transition Committee (NTC) and the obidient stakeholders have decried the position of neutrality taken by some lawmakers elected on the platform of the party since the leadership disagreement in the party began after the 2023 general elections.

 

The chairman of the NTC and former president of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), Comrade Abdulwaheed Omar, who spoke on telephone on the matter urged “all Labour Party members, especially leaders and stakeholders, not only in parliaments but everywhere across the country, to remind ourselves that building the Labour Party into a formidable winning party is the task of everyone.

“There can be no neutral household member who should feel at liberty to play fiddle when the house that gave him a pedestal is on fire or society is in conflagration. That has been the compelling situation of our party before the NLC/TUC Political Commission stepped in to the rescue,” Comrade Abdulwaheed stated.

He added: “While I wholeheartedly commend a few members of the National Assembly who have shown deference to our efforts by extending their solidarity to the NLC’s National Transition Committee, even though mostly in word without substance, those who refuse to stand with the new efforts to rebuild the party should open their eyes to the realities that we need a strong, united, and dynamic winning party going into 2027. That same 2027 has a single roof over all of us, and it is around the corner. It is indeed closer than they think.

“It is therefore incumbent and urgent upon stakeholders, including Labour Party members of our country’s national and state parliaments, and those in the few executive arms of government we presently have, to join hands with the NTC to build a strong new Labour Party; one that will emerge from our efforts to undertake a transparent, expansive, all-inclusive and integrity founded National Convention anchored on state congresses which shall have their provenance in credible all-participatory ward congresses nationwide,” Omar concluded.

Also speaking on the issue, the chairman of the Media and Publicity team of the Labour Party National Transition Committee (NTC), Comrade Tony Akeni Le Moin, noted that the leadership of the party and party supporters across the country deeply regret the position of “neutral stance” taken on the leadership crises in the party by LP members elected to the national and state assembly legislatures in the country.

On what he described as the “divisive and destructive anti-party expeditions against the party’s progress by the suspended former chairman, Mr. Julius Abure, and his mob of rebel exco renegades,” Comrade Akeni in a statement issued in Benin city, capital of Edo state, where he had joined other party leaders to grace the funeral reception honours of Late Madam Christiana Adesheila, Neé Omagbon, the mother-in-law of a frontline leader of the party, Bishop Samuel Omede, who is popularly called “Chairman of Chairmen” among the party’s leadership hierarchy.

It would be recalled that Barr. Julius Abure was suspended last May from the Labour Party by his ward, Arue, Uromi, in a letter dated May 14, 2024. Abure’s suspension was ratified by both his Local Government Area council executives of the party on May 15 and the Kelly Ogbaloi led state exco shortly after.

In a retaliatory action, Julius Abure had swiftly also announced suspension of the Ogbaloi state exco and thereafter set up a parallel exco to Ogbaloi’s, which is purportedly headed by a former speaker of the state, Mrs. Elizabeth Ativie. Thus, two parallel state executive councils of the Labour Party now exist and tussle for validity and supremacy in Edo state, a Peter Obi followership stronghold which is about to go into an intimidating off-season governorship election a few months away.

In what is widely seen as a desperate flounder to cling to his embattled office and garner relevance, Abure had followed his parallel exco announcement in Edo with the setting up of a “Directorate of Obidients” by his daily dwindling faction of the party, an act which has since come under pulverizing barrage of criticism and rejection by most Labour Party faithfuls and the Peter Obi centred Obidient community across the country and Diaspora.

Weighing in on the party’s national leadership tussle in Benin at the weekend, Tony Akeni, the Media and Publicity chieftain of the Labour Party National Transition Committee explained, “It was by sheer accident of history that Mr. Julius Abure was the sitting national chairman of the Labour Party in 2023 when the floodgates for elective aspirants was opened for the present crop of Labour Party legislators. Virtually one and all of them rode on the wavecrest of Peter Obi’s talismanic popularity and the Obidients’ ballot gusto to the exalted political offices they occupy today.”

“In their actions and stance since, our party lawmakers and elected executives tend to believe that because Abure issued and signed their candidacy forms in 2023, it was Abure that made them who they are presently, not the party and the party’s voters who made their wildest dreams come true. As educated elite and, you would hope, distinctly enlightened parliamentarians who should understand better than other segments of society that power is ephemeral and Abure’s badly played time must end someday, to the contrary, instead of our lawmakers to stand up for the truth, light and the new dawn which the Labour Party’s Political Commission that midwifed the NTC represents, they openly declared to leaders of the commission during a solemn joint conclave in May that they would remain neutral and see how the fight between the NLC Political Commission and Abure for the soul of the party would end. By implication, they would chose side after the final winner emerged. This is fathomlessly scandalous, deplorable and shameful beyond any threshold words can put together,” Akeni said.

Voicing the outrage of the NLC Political Commission and the Labour Party’s National Transition Committee,
Tony Akeni expanded, “Only the child in the womb anywhere in Nigeria can claim ignorance of the devastating trails and chains of criminal financial indictments, divisive maladministration, infantile tyranny and fifth-column disintegration that Abure and his Nnewi convention coupists have fashioned for the fall and destruction of the Labour Party which is today and tomorrow Nigeria’s last redemption ship.

“Investigations have since revealed that these acts of treason by Abure and his wolf pack actually date back to the heydays of the party’s 2023 general election campaigns, and have continued unabated to this minute.

“So, for elected members of our party across the country to take a stand of aggregate indifference to the travails of the party and to actually verbalize it is extremely sad, mind congealing and regrettable.”

“When most of these members now luxuriating in today’s National Assembly, state Houses of Assembly and executive arms of government came to run under the ticket of our party, they were either first-time political fingerlings and neophytes in shark waters, or previously unsuccessful ballot wannabes. They had no hope in hell of beating the rugged, rigorous and arcane Nigeria electoral system to win. At that vulnerable juncture in their political lives, the Labour Party and its Obidient tsunami did not sit on the fence or fold their arms. We did not declare that we would be neutral. The behemoth APC and PDP opponents they contested against would have defeated and swallowed them up. But the party and Obidient armies, not Julius Abure or his transactional junta of NWC merchants, who chested out in their millions to deliver their tickets and torpedoed them into political office and paradise they have found themselves today.

“It is therefore incredibly unfair and inglorious, to say the least, that when the NLC Political Commission and the preponderating millions of reforms seeking Obidients nationwide needed their support to rebuild the party, they have shown such dissonant depth of ingrate forgetfulness and smug indifference to the challenges of our party, especially those emanating from Abure’s rapacious, inordinate breaches of law and common-sense.

Akeni continued: “Neutrality is the moral dilemma of bad spectatorship. To be witness of history and take no responsibility in times of evil arises only from an aimless internally displaced conscience. Such vacancy of conscience and inaction are even more cruel than the repression and oppression of tyranny itself. In Elie Wiesel’s words, ‘We must always take sides. Neutrality helps the oppressor, never the victim. Silence encourages the tormentor, never the tormented,'” Comrade Tony Akeni quoted.

“By the averred stand of neutral spectatorship of the majority of our Labour Party caucuses in the National Assembly, state Houses of Assembly and privileged members of the executive arm, all of those who presently hold that stand-less stand above have become convicted and stripped naked in the podium of history by the words of Desmond Tutu: ‘If you are neutral in situations of injustice, you have chosen the side of the oppressor.’ In this instant case Abure,” Comrade Tony Akeni concluded.

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