The suspension of Uche Secondus as a member of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has been justified by the Rivers State chairman of the party, Desmond Akawor.
Mr Secondus, who is battling with court injunctions to retain his seat as the national chairman of the opposition party, was suspended on Tuesday by his ward executives.
He kicked against his suspension, saying it negates Article 59(3) in the party’s constitution which states that only the party’s National Executive Committee (NEC) can sanction him.
Defending the action of the ward executives, Mr Akawor said the failure of the suspended chairman to pay his dues for four years bolstered the move.
“On June 5th, I wrote a letter to all wards that they should furnish us with the names of the party members that are dead and party members that have not paid their dues including those that had defected for one reason or the other,” he told newsmen in Port Harcourt on Thursday. “Among the wards that responded was Ward 5 in Andoni. And it clearly showed that he (Secondus) had not paid his dues for the past four years. It is an offence in our party.
“For six consecutive months, if you have not paid your dues, your membership of the party is questionable. That issue was kept pending because we had to approach the national to present some of these issues.
“In his presence, intervention took place and he agreed on all the words that were put down only for him the following week to go globetrotting going from Niger to Ota to continue the course and saying that all that they had agreed was no longer possible.
“In that case what do you do? He’s not ready to listen to the elders, of course, he is equally not ready to look at the constitution of the party,” he added.
The PDP official said the ward where he was suspended have invited him to appear before a committee set up to look into the allegations against him adding that Secondus remains suspended if he refuses to.
Akawor said another move which led to his suspension was because Mr Secondus was against the resolution of Southern Governors Forum that the next president of the country must be from the Southern part of the country.
“The southern governors took a decision that the presidency should come from the South as an individual or a politician he should have known that it is now time to come home,” he explained. “The position he is occupying is on behalf of the South, he didn’t go there as an Andoni man. he went there because the chairmanship of the party was zoned to the south.
“If southern governors have taken a decision that they desire the presidency to come from the South he should have known that there is no point trying to rock the boat by kicking and running for second term,” Akawor added.