**Advises waring factions to explore internal mechanism to resolve issues

What would have resulted in a violent clash between two opposing factions of the Labour Party (LP)at its secretariat in Abuja on Thursday was averted by the leadership of the Forum of the 36 State chairmen of the party.
The faction loyal to Julius Abure and that loyal to Lamidi Apapa were locked up in a supremacy tussle at the secretariat as both claimed to have come to screen governorship aspirants of the party for Kogi, Bayelsa and Imo off season elections.
However, the chairman, Forum of State Chairmen of the party, Comrade Rotimi Kehinde and others waded in.

Chief Kehinde said the Labour party remained the property of the people and cannot be hijacked by any person or interest that does not represent the struggle of the Labour Union.
He said while the court may have prevented the National Chairman, Barr Julius Abure and others from accessing the secretariat, the court order does not affect the council of Chairmen who are integral part of the Labour Party National Executive Committee (NEC).

Therefore, the council of Chairmen can access the secretariat at any time pointing out that only the National Executive Council can decide the fate of Abure.
He said the Party has internal mechanism to solve the issue and the aggrieved group have not exploited it, thus they should wait for the outcome of the court before they come to the secretariat.
He pointed out that Abure and the other three persons barred from the Secretariat were not given fair hearing.
His words: “They have not been heard by the court or given the opportunity to defend themselves, the next thing we are hearing is that they should not parade themselves as officers of the Labour party.
“We as the critical member of NEC, that is the National Council of Chairmen of the Labour Party, we are an integral part of NEC, which has the right authority to ratify any decision taken by the Party, we have not met.
“We have told them, go and wait for the court to decide, you have taken matter to the court, they do not want to do that. They are taking the law into their hands.
“When they heard that we have travelled for an assignment in the south South, they came here to the national Secretariat to come and cause this trouble that they are causing. As you can see, we are not fomenting trouble.
“All the chairmen here are not with any of their personal staff. We did not come here to thugs, I am wondering what those ones are doing here.
“Let us look at it. We were not barred from the Secretariat. The chairmen and three others were not barred from the secretariat, The Forum of Chairmen were not barred, so we have the right to enter the Secretariat and should have access to the Secretariat.
“So that means these people have some other ulterior motive. They have been calling out chairmen to come and support them but we refused. We said no, this is not right.
“Someone who raised the hand of another candidate of another party in his state, how can that person have the moral right to come to the Labour Party Secretariat to say he is a member of the Labour Party.
“We have pictorial evidence and all that. We told them that what you have done is wrong. You have case against the national Chairman, submit your petition to NEC, let NEC investigate.
“If they are guilty, we will ask them to leave our party, nobody is an island. In this case nothing has been done. This people have not exploited the internal machinery in our Labour Party Constitution on how you can settle internally.
“They did not avail themselves of that privilege. They are telling us that one man is the Acting National Chairman. Where?
“It is only the national Executive Council (NEC), that has the right to ratify decision made by the NWC,” High Chief Kehinde stated.
He appealed to all the security agencies to allow us to move our party along.
The Chairmen who assembled at the Party Secretariat where they addressed the media said it is clear that the crisis brewing from the party are fuelled by the crises ridden All Progressives Congress and the People’s Democratic Party.
Abia State, Chairman of the Labour Party, Comrade, Ceekay Igara, said the whole scheme was to deny Nigerians of the benwfir of justice and development.
His words: “PDP is in shambles, APC is in total Disarray, now some elements from these failed organisations decided to use suspended members of the party to come and destabilize the party.
“Let me tell you the truth, we are talking about bringing back Nigeria. If we must take back Nigeria we must stand on the truth. We must stand on equity, stand in justice and fairness.
“There is no fairness in this, I do not know when last Apapa came to the Party Secretariat.
Even the suspended youth leader, engaged me for more than three hours on the phone talking to me. Telling me the reason why I should resign my stand.
“I told him, listen, you are just a new person in the party, just about three months or so, you have not studied the constitution.
“They said they suspended you based on some of the things you did, for which you did not take permission from the authorities and when that happens. It is just proper, that a disciplinary action be taken
and that they did.
“It is now left for you to push that they bring the matter to NEC if NEC ratifies that, it stands but if NEC says no and Over rules them, you are back.
“Why bring down the roof of the house? That is to tell you that there is an ulterior motive. If not, you cannot destroy a house which you built. A house that will provide you protection and cover during the storm.?
“As party chairmen, if there is going to be any convention all the delegates are going to come from us. Those people do not have any delegates. Why are they causing this trouble when they know that if all of us can agree we bring them back. It is not destroying the structure.” Igara stated.
Present at the Secreteriate were the Rivers state Chairman of the Party, Hilda Dokubo, Edo state Chairman of the Party, Kelly Ogbaloi among others.

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