• en

Labour Party Criticises Own Lawmakers For Disrespecting Party Supremacy 

Labour Party has threatened to discipline its House members for failure to be true ambassadors of the people.

The Labour Party, on Monday, took a swipe at its members in the House of Representatives, saying they had failed to be true ambassadors of the people.

Labour Party leadership, which took exception to calling for an extension of time at its March 27 national convention, however, threatened to discipline its House of Representatives caucus.

House of Representatives caucus of the Labour Party, in a statement by its leader, Hon. Afam Ogene, had at the weekend called for an extension of time for the national convention to give room for more consultation among stakeholders before holding the exercise.

Ogene said the party needed more time to put its house in order, make proper and wider consultations and make an effort to bring every stakeholder on board, before it would go ahead with such an important party event.

Besides, the caucus also complained about the change of venue from Benin to Umuahia, the Abia State Capital.

But in a statement, on Monday, by the National Publicity Secretary, Obiora Ifoh, the party said, “We, therefore, advise our lawmakers to desist from rushing to the press on party matters. Party internal matters must remain and kept internal matters.

“The party will not hesitate to discipline any party member, who will not respect the supremacy of the party. The party is prepared to defend its ideology and constitution at all times irrespective of whose ox is gored.

“We want to assure our party members that the leadership is continuing with our consultations with stakeholders at all levels to ensure that a free, fair and rancour free convention is held.”

The party said the lawmakers were expected to be knowledgeable about its constitution.

It dismissed the position of Ogene and the caucus to the effect that it was unconventional to conduct the convention before state, local government and ward congresses.

“By this statement from Hon. Ogene, it is pertinent to point out that he is very unknowledgeable as it relates to the provision of the constitution of the party under which he was elected.

“We had expected, even though he is coming from the background of PDP and APC, he should not mistake the APC and PDP constitutions to that of the Labour Party. We would like to educate him to note that as the other parties’ constitutions are different, so is the Labour Party.

“In line with Article 15:1-4 of our party constitution, there is no equality of tenure. While the Ward, local government and state executives have three years tenure, the national executive has four years tenure.

“As at the moment, party executives in over sixteen states are subsisting because they have conducted their congresses. We had expected Hon. Ogene to read the constitution of the party before making public comments against the party,” it stated.

The Labour Party said the leader of the caucus was the alter ego of the party, who should defend the party policy and programmes in the national assembly.

“And for him to say that the House of Representatives caucus was not informed about the convention is clearly a mischief taken too far,” it said.

Accordingly, the party noted that, “For the records, the House of Representatives through the caucus leader was duly informed about the coming convention. We are aghast at the kind of politics Hon. Ogene has chosen to play. It is therefore very unhealthy for him to rush to the press to misinform our members.

“We had expected him to be a liaison between the party leadership and the national assembly and as a leader he claims to be to help in ensuring that peace reigns in the party at all times.

“We are also shocked that members of the House of Representatives elected under the Labour Party are always quick to rush to the media whenever we make major decisions.

“This is against the background that they have never risen to the occasion as members of the Labour Party in the House who are supposed to be the voice of the people and speak truth to power, in spite of the numerous challenges the country is going through.

“Again, considering the sacrifices made by Nigerians in electing these Labour Party legislators, we had expected them to be the Ambassadors of the People. It appears that they sit at the national assembly for themselves alone. It is obvious that it is only when it concerns the party that they flex muscles.

“They need not be told of the persecution the party leadership has been undergoing in the hands of the government in power as a result of their election into offices and yet, they have no qualms in bringing the party to opprobrium at any given opportunity,” the statement stressed.

Chuks Okocha

Follow us on: