The founder and Chairman, Board of Trustees of the New Nigeria Peoples Party, Boniface Aniebonam, has described the purported expulsion of the Ogun State Chairman of the party, Olaposi Oginni, by the National Working Committee as unconstitutional and illegal.
Aniebonam stated that he was not aware of the expulsion, stressing that the action of the party’s NWC did not have his blessings.
Recall that NNPP national publicity secretary, Agbo Major, had announced the expulsion of the Oginni-led Ogun State executive over alleged involvement in anti-party activities.
Major said the leadership of the party in Ogun State worked against the party’s interest and endorsed other party candidates in the state.
Oginni however, denied the allegations while describing his expulsion by the NWC as a waste of time and a mere imagination that would not stand in the face of the law.
Reacting to the expulsion in a statement, the NNPP founder stressed that the party’s NWC did not follow due process and procedures in the expulsion of Oginni as Ogun chairman.
Aniebonam explained that the national convention of the party has the final authority to expel a member, stressing that it is beyond the NWC to publicly announce Oginni’s expulsion without due process.
He added that “the action of the NWC does not have my blessing because they need to follow processes and procedures to whatever decision they want to take. For me, it is the constitutional issue for fair hearing. Before you take any action, you must grant that person fair hearing. That action did not go well with me.
“Meanwhile, definitely I am trying to get to know quite all the things that is going on in that party. I am not really in the know and I must be very frank with you that I am not happy. There is a need for the rule of law, we should not be acting in contradiction to the rule in carrying out responsibilities.
“There are organs of the party, and I can tell you that the national convention is the highest platform of the party, the next is the board, the third is NEC and the fourth is NWC. That means before the NWC can expel somebody, they have to report to the board in that regard.
“There is a breach of rule of law, there is a breach of processes and procedures. It is my hope that some of these things will need to be nip in the bud so as not to cause avoidable public distress”, he explained.
Aniebonam urged the members of the party in Ogun State to remain calm and not result to violence.
“I can only ask the Ogun State to keep calm, they should not take to violence. In summary of what I just told you now is that even for any reason that you think anti-party activities happened, why going to the extreme of expulsion. Why didn’t you suspend the person and wait for further action.
“Because it is only the national convention that has the power to expel members, and if you have expelled somebody and you say okay, you want it to ratify by the national convention, it is useless because you have finished what you are doing now.
Speaking on the appointment of caretaker committee to oversee the affairs of the party in Ogun, Aniebonam stressed that “If they have decided to appoint anyone as the chairman of caretaker committee, it does not make sense because I am not aware as chairman of the board and founder of the party.”
Meanwhile, Oginni-led executive on Tuesday reopen the party’s secretariat. The embattled chairman, alongside the party chairmen of Oyo and Lagos states, led members of the party to re-open the secretariat after it was reportedly attacked last week by suspected hoodlums.
The chairmen from other states described Oginni as someone who have done a lot for the sustainability of the party in Southwest and pledged their supports for the Ogun chairman.