PDP MEMBERSHIP: BODE GEORGE, OGUNLEWE IN WAR OF WORDS
The infighting in the Lagos State chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) came to the fore yesterday as the former national vice chairman of the party, Chief Bode George and Senator Adeseye Ogunlewe traded words on who between the two is an authentic member of the party.
Speaking at a conference at his residence in Ikoyi Lagos, George said Ogunlewe is not a member of the PDP. He said the former is a member of the rival Action Congress of Nigeria who is in the party to destabilize it. The press conference was attended by party stalwarts and some leaders of the party in the South West led by Alhaji Shaib Oyedekun.
The former chairman of the Nigeria Ports Authority said if any member did not participate actively in the party during the October 22 local government election in the state, then such person cannot genuinely call himself a member of the party.
'I am saying publicly, Ogunlewe is not a member of PDP, he is a bonafide member of the ACN. I accepted him into this party, by the grace of the late Funsho Willaims. We have it on record, he has vowed that he will pretend to remain in PDP so that he will help to destroy the party. I am not saying it under cover; it is an open challenge,'
'Before election he made press conferences and said that we cannot even have one councilor.
If he has said it openly that we can't win why should we believe that he is with us. He also has the audacity to go and say who are the people here, that we don't know how to steal votes on the pages of newspaper. It was compelling to react. He made me his point of attack. And that is why I am on this platform.'
But in a quick reaction, Ogunlewe, a former minister of works said if any of them is not a member of the party, then it is the former PDP national vice chairman. He denied that he was working to undermine the party in the state. The former minister said he never at any point said the party would not win a councillorship seat. According to him, he supported PDP candidates from Lagos East Senatorial District in the just concluded election with funds to prosecute the election.
'He (George) wants to drive everybody out of the party, so that he can remain there. He drove Demola Seriki and ten other prominent members of the party. It is a distraction. He is not in a position to determine who is a member of the party. He is a sinking man.
'How could I have said that we will not win a councillorship seat. I delivered one councillorship seat in Ikorodu. What did he deliver in Lagos Island?' Ogunlewe queried in a telephone interview with Daily Sun. However, George said 'it up to the state executive of the party to decide Ogunlewe's fate in line with the party's constitution. He said Ogunlewe and others will get the opportunity to defend themselves before they finally decide their fate.'