The rift in the National Working Committee of the Peoples Democratic Party took a fresh twist on Friday, as Saturday PUNCHreliably learnt that 16 other members who had yet to refund the controversial housing allowance to the party were under intense pressure to do so.
This, according to findings, is to pit the NWC members against the party’s National Chairman, Iyorchia Ayu, whom some party members, led by Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike, asked to resign in order for peace to reign in the party.
A credible source in the party told one of our correspondents that “there is a tendency for most of them to return the money. Some are waiting for the national chairman to return before making a decision.”
The PUNCH reported on Friday that six NWC members, including the Deputy National Chairman (South), Taofeek Arapaja; National Woman Leader, Prof Stella Effah-Attoe; National Vice Chairman (South-South), Chief Dan Orbih, and three others returned what was termed housing allowance into the party’s coffers.
This came after Ayu was accused by the Rivers State governor of inducing NWC members with huge sums of money in a bid to conceal his alleged financial recklessness.
While Arapaja returned N36m, the five others returned the sum of N28.8m each with letters addressed to Ayu, giving reasons for their decision to reject the allowance.
The 21-member NWC includes the Deputy National Chairman (North), Umar Damagun; National Secretary, Samuel Anyanwu; Deputy National Secretary, Setoji Kosheodo; National Treasurer, Ahmed Mohammed; and the Deputy National Treasurer, Ndubisi David.
Others are the National Organising Secretary, Umar Bature; Deputy National Organising Secretary, Ighoyota Amori; National Financial Secretary, Daniel Woyegikuro; Deputy National Financial Secretary, Adamu Kamale; National Publicity Secretary, Debo Ologunagba; and Deputy National Publicity Secretary, Ibrahim Abdullahi.
The list also includes the Deputy National Women’s Leader, Hajara Wanka; National Youth Leader, Muhammed Suleiman; Deputy National Youth Leader, Timothy Osadolor; National Legal Adviser, Kamaldeen Ajibade; Deputy National Legal Adviser, Okechukwu Osuoha; National Auditor, Okechuckwu Daniel; and Deputy National Auditor, Abdulrahman Mohammed.