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Ahanotu, Akingbade Trade Words Over Labour Party Conflict

While Ahanotu said that the Labour Party was under attack from the Apapa- led faction, Akingbade claimed that there were no conflicts, merely misunderstandings.

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Prince Kennedy Ahanotu, the Deputy National Secretary of the Labour Party, and Oyelekan Akingbade, the Factional Labour Party Legal Adviser, exchanged words over the recent tensions in the Labour Party.

In an interview with ARISE NEWS on Thursday, Ahanotu and Akingbade aired their views on the ongoing challenges that are being faced by the Labour Party, as there is an ongoing leadership crisis, where there has been a contention for power between the leaders of the divided factions of the political party, Julius Abure and Lamidi Apapa.

Ahanotu, while airing his views, said that the Apapa led faction decided to create issues within the party, as he claimed that they attempted to hijack the party’s office on the 5th of April where they had a meeting and distributed positions within themselves without consulting other members of the party leadership. He also claimed that Akingbade and Apapa were trying to withdraw the Labour party cases in the tribunal and jeopardize Obi’s case in the tribunal, saying, “On the 7th, a notice of withdrawal was issued in Edo State where Akingbade was representing the Labour Party without consulting the national chairman and leadership of the party, to withdraw cases of our candidates in Edo State.” He then claimed, “The labour party is truly under attack and the instruments that are being used are that same Akingbade that is the former legal adviser because NEC has suspended him.”

In response to this, Akingbade replied that there was no crisis among the members of the Labour party, that there were simply misunderstandings. He then said, “There was never an attempt to withdraw the petition of Peter Obi from the tribunal. I challenge them to present documents where we actually filed to withdraw the petition of Peter Obi from the tribunal. There was nothing like that.” Further responding to Ahanotu’s claims, he reiterated, “Kennedy and his cohorts, they are just alarmists, they are confusionists. They don’t even know what they want, they don’t know the direction.” He said that when they went to the office to have the earlier mentioned meeting, they were acting on the orders of the court. He claimed that a text message was sent to the members of the party and that out of 11 members, only 7 attended, Kennedy claimed he didn’t get one. Ahanotu then said, “I put it to him that even in his phone, there is no text message with respect to that meeting. All of them that attended that meeting, they can’t give a proof that there was a text message sent to any of them.”  Kennedy also said that there were only 5 people, not 7, who attended the meeting. “Akingbade should know, as a lawyer, that as long as Labour party is concerned, it is not the court that will decide the labour party leadership.”

However, even amongst their disagreement, the party members claimed that both factions were dedicated and full of support for Peter Obi and believed in his vision for the nation.

Ozioma Samuel-Ugwuezi

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