The African Democratic Congress (ADC) has suspended its 2023 presidential candidate, Dumebi Kachikwu, over alleged anti-party activities.
His suspension was contained in a statement released on Saturday by the Deputy National Chairman (Politics) of the party, Bamidele Ajadi.
In the statement, Mr Ajadi accused Mr Kachikwu of making “defamatory” statements that contravene the values of the ADC. He also accused him of other anti-party activities.
He said the decision on the candidate’s suspension was taken on Friday at an emergency National Working Committee (NWC) meeting held at a location he did not disclose.
Mr Ajadi described the action of the party’s 2023 presidential flag bearer as a sign of “crass irresponsibility, gross indiscipline, disingenuous scandalization” and an attempt to blackmail the party’s executives to do his bidding.
He said such an attitude is improper for someone who wants to be the president of Nigeria.
“The NWC viewed with great concern the baseless and defamatory video made, published and circulated by Mr Dumebi Kachikwu, which was intended to disparage and impugn the integrity and image of a peaceful and transformation-oriented African Democratic Congress and its national officers,” Mr Ajadi wrote in the statement.
“Act(s) conduct or utterances likely to bring the party into hatred, contempt or ridicule; engaging in dishonest practices, defrauding the party, its members or officials; engaging in anti-party activities; unauthorized publicity of Party dispute or fractionalization or creating parallel Party organ(s) at any level; engaging in any other activities likely to cause disaffection among Party members or likely to disrupt the peaceful, lawful and efficient conduct of party business; belonging to any such factional group or organ; collusion or conspiracy to convene unauthorized meetings, shall constitute acts of gross misconduct.”
At the time of this report, PREMIUM TIMES could not locate the video referenced by the deputy chairman.
In addition to Mr Kachikwu’s alleged infraction committed in the video, Mr Ajadi said the candidate, since his emergence on June 9, has also “refused to share with the party any meaningful, constructive or reasonable Presidential Campaign Roadmap for the forthcoming presidential election.”
“His negative actions and/or inactions so far, have put in jeopardy the fate and prospects of all our candidates contesting for various offices across the country. The committee of the whole house, in a very clear and unequivocal term, condemned the said video in its entirety and described it as a piece of badly crafted blackmail and mudslinging, and thereby unanimously recommended his immediate suspension from the party from today, Friday 2nd September 2022.
“This resolution would be forwarded to the National Executive Council for further actions,” Mr Ajadi wrote.
While PREMIUM TIMES can confirm that Article 14(2) of the ADC constitution empowers the Deputy National Chairman (Politics) to preside over meetings in the absence of the chairman, it could not confirm the whereabouts of the latter when the meeting was held.
Whether the chairman, Ralph Nwosu, supported the decision of the NWC also remains unclear. Calls to his known phone number were not answered.
This newspaper called the ADC National Secretary, Baba Abdullahi, and Mr Kachikwu to speak on the latest development but none of them answered their phones.
Before the latest development, there was tension at the ADC national secretariat in Abuja earlier in the week as 27 state chairpersons of the party called for the resignation of Mr Nwosu.
They said the national chairman had overstayed his tenure in office. Mr Nwosu has allegedly been the party’s chairman for 17 years.
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