The acting Chairman of the Lagos State Peoples Democratic Party, Kamaldeen Olorunoje, has accused a former National Deputy Chairman of the party, Chief Bode George, of contributing to the party’s defeat in in the state.
Olorunoje, who is the acting chairman of the party after the suspension of the substantive chairman, Capt. Tunji Shelle (retd.), said this during a press conference in Lagos on Thursday.
He said George imposed several candidates on the party which ultimately affected the party’s chances.
Olorunoje said the six House of Representatives seats and eight House of Assembly seats which the party won in the last election were due to the efforts of the candidates and a few party leaders that put some mechanisms in place.
While reacting to the defection of several Lagos PDP chieftains to the All Progressives Congress, Olorunoje said, “Chief Babatunde Olorogun-Etti left, Dr. Yomi Finnih left, Chief Olorunfunmi Basorun. All these people left because of one person, Chief Bode George.
“We all come from Lagos Island. Olorogun-Etti is from Ward E3 while George is from E2. If as a leader you are losing people in your local government, it calls for questioning and Olorogun-Etti was in Chief George’s caucus.
“For Lagos State, his leadership has not yielded any fruit. I respect him a lot but a lot needs to be said. He must be able to embrace democracy. His attitude is due to his military training. For example, he imposes candidates on the party.
“Most of our candidates that won elections were supposed to have been replaced. Had they been replaced, we wouldn’t have won anything. Chief George even told one of them to run for councillorship. That person is a member of the House of Representatives today.”
On the legality of the suspension of Shelle, Olorunoje said the National Working Committee would have the last say. He, however, added that the members of the State Executive Committee had the power to suspend him.
He said the South-West chapter of the party had set up a panel to look into the issue.
Olorunoje said he was not representing a faction of the party but the entire organ of the party since members of the SWC had given him unanimous support. He, therefore, urged members of the public not to regard Shelle as the chairman of the party.