Why I Won’t Suspend Wike, Others – PDP Nat’l Chairman

The Acting Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Umar Damagum, says suspension of party members accused of disloyalty and anti-party activities is off the table.

Damagum announcement is coming amid the recent calls by some stakeholders within the PDP, urging Damagum to sanction former Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike, and many others for alleged anti-party activities during the just-concluded general elections.

Reacting to the call, Damagum said the National Working Committee under his leadership will not suspend or dismiss any ‘disloyal’ member.

He made this known while addressing the PDP Mobilisers Group in Abuja.

He disclosed that the NWC had approved to set up a committee to review and reconcile all aggrieved members.

The chairman said the party was more interested in settling dispute, reconciliation and bringing more people into the party than sanctioning any alleged anti-party, which, according to him, may destroy the party.

He said, “They are always telling you these people are not doing the right thing. But when you are in a position of leadership, you are bound by a set of rules, and these rules, even though they are itching you, you don’t apply them—not because of anything, but so that you don’t destroy the house.

“I have been seeing the agitations within our platforms, saying the NWC was not doing this or doing that. This is an opportunity for me to explain.

“Somebody has said that sometimes when you are not knowledgeable about certain things and you go on saying about your thinking, it will always injure the sensibility of others to understand you.”

Damagum also described the 2023 presidential election defeat as “most painful”, cautioning members of the party against a blame game.

He said, “I am very proud to say that this party was started by me as a driver. Today, I am the acting national chairman by the grace of God. I have never calculated that I will be given this title. I believe in this party, I believe that this party is the best in this country.

“The NWC has already come up and approved a 2023 election review and reconciliation committee. They will go and investigate. We’ll give them the mandate to form subcommittees. However, there is only one national committee that will review the 2023 election and also review from 2015 to 2019. This is so that at the end of the day when they bring the reports, we will meet and take decisions.”

Damagum, who admitted that many members were involved in anti-party activities at different levels, said, “If I said we should start suspension, I will end up suspending many people because they were involved in anti-party activities. So, please bear with us. We intend to keep this party together and to manage it. This is my mandate.”

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