INEC releases CoR to LP chairman, says NLC not a political party

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Olaoluwa Folalu


    Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, has ended legitimacy crisis in Labour Party, by giving its Certificate of Registration to the national chairman of the party, Alhaji Abdulkadir Abdulsalam.

A Certified True Copy of the CoR, dated May 25, 2005 and signed by former chairman of the commission, Sir Abel Guobadia, was obtained in Abuja.

The Director of Voter Education and Publicity in INEC, Mr. Oluwole Osaze-Uzzi, stated this during an enquiry to ascertain if the CoR and letter to the NLC giving recognition to the leadership of Alhaji Abdulkadir Abdulsalam emanated from the commission.

His words: “The LP leadership under A.A. Salam and Kayode Ajulo has been attending all meetings convened by INEC; I am not aware that there is any controversy in LP; you’re the one telling me. You said you have a letter and the letter speaks for itself. Is there anybody dragging leadership with them? 

“Moreover the fact that somebody is holding a CoR doesn’t mean registration of that party. Moreover, the NLC is not a political party, but a labour union and a labour union cannot be a party. If you look at the constitution, only registered political parties can canvass for votes and parade themselves as political parties.”

It would be recalled that the former national chairman of LP, Mr. Dan Nwanyanwu, had handed over the CoR of the party to the Nigeria Labour Congress, even after he had resigned before the 2015 general elections to join the Peoples Democratic Party.

But LP’s lawyer, Chief Chukwuma Ekomaru (SAN), in a letter to NLC President, Ayuba Wabba, had said that the receipt of the certificate was faulty as it had been reported missing by Nwanyanwu, who handed it over even when he had resigned from the party  to join PDP.

“What Dan Nwanyanwu handed over to you as the certificate of registration of LP is a stolen property because Dan Nwanyanwu is no longer a member of LP”, he had said.

But a letter from INEC Headquarters dated September 3 addressed to Wabba and signed by the commission’s Secretary, Mrs. Augusta Ogakwu, and obtained by our correspondent in Abuja told the NLC leadership that the authentic LP is the one produced during the party’s national convention held on October 11 in Akure in which its National Executive Committee elected Alhaji Abdulkadir Abdulsalam and Kayode Ajulo national Chairman and Secretary respectively.

The commission was responding to NLC’s request for “urgent intervention to arrest the activities of an impostor group in LP.”

The letter reads: “With reference to your letter on the above subject dated August 5 2015, I am directed to inform you that the commission has reviewed relevant documents and records in its possession in respect of LP and established the following:

“Membership of LP as provided in Articles 1 and 9 of LP constitution, 2009 does not confer any special or superior status on the NLC. The last duly convened and monitored national convention of LP was held on October 11 2014 at Adebemile Hall, Akure, Ondo State. 

“The convention elected a new NEC with Alhaji Abdulkadir Abdulsalam and Kayode Ajulo as national chairman and national secretary respectively. In accordance with Article 15(1) of the LP constitution, 2009, the elected NEC has a tenure of four years.”

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