By Emmanuel Oloniruha
Sen. Ali-Modu Sheriff, the Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) on Thursday re-opened the party’s national secretariat, Wadata Plaza.
The party’s secretariat had been under lock and key since May, 2016 after its National Convention held in Port Harcourt, Rivers State.
Sheriff, who arrived the party secretariat as about 6 p.m, informed newsmen that he was at the premises to inspect the level of repairs to be done at the secretariat.
“We are here at the National Secretariat this evening to access the place so that we can resume either Monday or Tuesday. We will go round to access the kind of repairs to be done.
“We will get our painters and cleaners over the weekend to work on it, and while they are doing so, we will continue with our consultations just like we have been doing since the judgment was delivered,” he said.
Sheriff, who was on Feb. 17 confirmed by the Court of Appeal in Port Harcourt as the authentic PDP Chairman, had promised to re-open the secretariat latest by Friday.
Those who accompanied Sheriff to the secretariat include the Acting Deputy National Chairman, Dr Cairo Ojougboh, National Secretary, Prof. Wale Oladipo, National Auditor, Alhaji Adeyanju, Sen. Buruji Kashamu, and Alhaji Ahmed Gulak among others.
Meanwhile, Prince Dayo Adeyeye, the Publicity Secretary, PDP National Caretaker Committee has described Sheriff’s action as illegal.
“As far as we are concerned, the forceful entry of Ali Modu-Sheriff and his team into the party secretariat is illegal and most unwelcomed.
“We say this because the keys to the secretariat are with the Board of Trustees and we’ve checked with them, and can confirm that the keys have not been handed over to Sheriff or any of his followers.
“The implication of this is that he broke into the secretariat which is a criminal offence.
“We also expected that Sheriff should have waited for the conclusion of the Appeal we filed at the Supreme Court before he forced himself in just like we held on when we got court judgment favouring us last year.’’
According to him, we are condemning his action in totality and we view it as an affront on the rule of law.
Adeyeye added that Sheriff should be held responsible for any loss of documents or damage to the property within the party secretariat.
“The administrative members of staff as accounting officers were not around to see the event happen, and as the custodians of the party’s property, they refused to participate in the illegal entry made by Ali-Modu Sheriff.’’
He advised Sheriff to vacate the secretariat immediately in his own interest.
“We also call on authority of the Nigerian Police to prevent chaos by flushing Sheriff and his team out of the PDP secretariat.
“Let all parties wait for the judgment of the Supreme Court which is the highest court in the land.