The crisis rocking the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) has taken a new dimension as a High Court in Port Harcourt, Rivers State ordered Prince Uche Secondus to stop parading himself as the National Chairman of the party.
In an interim order signed by Honourable Justice (Dr), O. Gbasam and the Assistant Chief Registrar (Litigation), Patricia N. Victor Nwoka, the court sacked and restrained Secondus from performing the functions of the PDP National Chairman.
The opposition party has been in crisis following the resignation of some national officers and the stringent call by some stakeholders for the resignation of the National Chairman over what they described as poor leadership.
To save the party from crisis ahead of the 2023 general election, PDP critical national stakeholders, which includes the 13 states PDP governors, Board of Trustees (BOT), National Working Committee (NWC), former Senate Presidents, former governors, and many others on August 10, 2021, brought the party’s National Convention forward to October.
The court also approved the suspension of Secondus as a member of the party pending the hearing and determination of motion on notice for interlocutory injunction.
Those named as claimants/applicants are: Ibeawuchi Ernest Alex, Dennis Nna Amadi, Emmanuel Stephen and Umezirike Onucha, with defendants cited as Prince Uche Secondus and PDP.
According to the order, “Upon the motion ex-parte dated 23rd August 2021 coming up for hearing and determination before His Lordship, Honourable Justice (Dr), O. Gbasam of the Degema division sitting at Port Harcourt has vacation court; and after reading the affidavit in support of the motion Ex – parte as well as the written address and after hearing the submission of H. A. Bello Esq is hereby ordered as follows: that order be and is hereby made granting leave for the commencement for the suit during the 2021 annual vacation of the high court of Rivers State.
“An order restraining the 1st Defendant from parading himself as member of the 2nd Defendant or the National Chairman of the Defendant or performing the functions of national chairman of the 2nd defendant or calling, attending or presiding over any meeting of the 2nd defendant or any committee of the 2nd defendant at the Ward, Local Government or State level or calling for any Ward, Local Government or State Congress of the 2nd defendant or setting up committees for such Congresses or participating in any activity of the 2nd defendant whatsoever whilst on suspension as a member of the 2nd defendant pending the hearing and determination of the motion on notice for interlocutory injunction.”
“That an order is also made granting leave to serve by substituted means the originating summon, motion on notice, all orders made by the Honourable Court and all subsequent processes on the 1st respondent by pasting same on the gate of the 1st respondent residence No. 1 William Jumbo Street, old G.R.A. Port Harcourt, Rivers State and by publication in The Nation Newspaper.
“That an order is also made granting leave to serve by substituted means all orders made by the Honourable Court on the respondent by publishing the same in The Nation Newspaper”
Reacting in a statement in Monday, Secondus through his media aide, Ike Abonyi, stated that he is ready to defend himself in court if summoned.
“If Secondus and the party are taken to court, they will defend themselves,” Abonyi said.
“PDP and Secondus are not afraid of court; this party is a child of history, owned by Nigerians, bigger than any individual or group, including desperadoes.”
He, however, accused the Special Assistant on media to Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State of manufacturing the story of Secondus suspension.