The former Enugu State governor, Chimaroke Nnamani, on Friday dismissed his expulsion from the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) as a joke.
The PDP National Working Committee (NWC) had earlier on Friday approved the expulsion of the senator representing Enugu West and five other members for alleged anti-party activities.
The other affected members are John Fayose, son of former Ekiti State governor, Ayo Fayose, Ajijola Oladimeji (Ekiti Central), Olayinka Olalere (Ekiti Central II), Akerele Oluyinka (Ekiti North I), and Emiola Jennifer (Ekiti South II).Nnamani, who reacted to his expulsion in a letter addressed to the PDP NWC through his lawyer, Olusegun O. Jolaawo (SAN), insisted that the party leadership lacks the power to suspend or expel him from the party.He said the NWC failed to follow due process before suspending him, adding that the expulsion does not hold water.
The decision, according to him, violated the PDP constitution which clearly stated that only the National Executive Committee (NEC) has the power to suspend or expel a member of the National Assembly. “The ex-governor noted that based on article 57(7) of the PDP constitution, the NWC lacks the powers to contemplate any disciplinary measure against him in the first place.
He described the NWC meeting held on January 20 as illegal and urged the party to reconsider the action. The letter read: “It is evident on the basis of Articles 57(7) and 59(3) of the Constitution of your party excerpted above, that no organ of the party, including the National Working Committee, has the competence to entertain any question of discipline against our client, except the National Executive Committee of the party.
“It, therefore, gives us great concern, that your proposed disciplinary hearing of 8 February, 2023 as stated in your letter of 1st February, 2023, is built and erected on the illegal and invalid meeting and decision taken by the National Working Committee of your Party at its meeting of January 20, 2023, suspending our client from the Party.Your letter to our client dated 1st February, 2023 made it abundantly clear that the complaint against our client was made to your committee by the National Working Committee.However, by virtue of the provision to Article 57(7) of the Constitution of your Party, the National Working Committee is required to make complaint on any disciplinary matter against a member of the National Assembly, only to the National Executive Committee of the Party.
Your committee has not claimed to be the National Executive Committee of the PDP and in fact, is not.“Your committee, therefore, has no powers under the Constitution of the Party (under which you claim to be proceeding against our client) to entertain or hear any question of discipline against our client as he is a member of the National Assembly. Only a properly constituted National Executive Committee of the party can entertain such question of discipline against him.
“The proceeding and decision reached at the meeting of the National Working Committee of your Party which was held on January 20, 2023, is therefore, both illegal and a nullity.”