Wrangling Over Sale Of PDP Forms

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Controversy has rocked the sale of forms by Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) reportedly put at N10 billion resulting in accusations and denials on the management of the funds.

The party had sold forms to Presidential, Governorship aspirants, aspirants into state, National Assemblies during the 2019 General elections.

Worried by not rendering accounts, Kazeem Afegbua, a member of the PDP, Monday, petitioned the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission and Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission for a probe of the party’s accounts.

But, PDP has denied the allegation that it generated N10 billion from sale of nomination and expression of interest forms in 2019.

The party’s National Publicity Secretary, Kola Ologbondiyan, who denied the allegation at a news conference on Monday in Abuja, described Afegbua’s claims as spurious and irresponsible.

Ologbondiyan said the PDP generated N4.6 billion, and raised a budget for its expenditure, in line with all its known financial regulations.

He said the attention of the party was drawn to a claim by Afegbua in a petition to the EFCC and ICPC, asking that the PDP leadership accounts for the sum of N10 billion, allegedly realised from the sale of forms in 2019.

He said: “The PDP did not raise Afegbua’s fictitious sum of N10 billion as alleged by him.

“For the avoidance of doubt, the PDP generated the sum of N4.6 billion and raised a budget for its expenditure, in line with all known financial regulations of our party.

“This budget passed through the organs of our party and received the approvals from the NWC, the Governors’ Forum, the Board of Trustees, as well as other organs of the party.

“As a law-abiding political party that respects the doctrine of rule of law and transparency, the budget was presented to the National Executive Committee, where it also received a final approval.

“It is imperative to state that all the sums received and budgeted for, passed through the due process of approval by the necessary organs of the party.

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“Moreover, the PDP has no account under the name or guise of Afegbua’s ghostly Morufu Nigeria Limited.”

He said as a political party, under whose administration the anti-graft agencies were formulated, PDP strictly adhered to best practices of transparency, accountability and probity in all issues, including its financial administration.

Ologbondiyan added that PDP had since submitted its audited account of financial expenditures to the Independent National Electoral Commission for 2019, in line with statutory requirements of the law.

He said the party had already contacted its lawyers for the next line of action.

The spokesman further explained that the party would not in any way be distracted by an “inconsequential blackmailer hired to mudsling the party and its leadership, in order to divert attention from the salient issues in the country.

“For the benefit of unsuspecting members of the public, the activities of a certain Afegbua have always been suspicious, and we urge Nigerians to be wary of such characters and their backers.”

Afegbua, a one-time Edo State Commissioner for Information, Monday, petitioned the EFCC and ICPC to look into the financial transactions of the PDP’s National Chairman, Prince Uche Secondus in the spirit of transparency and accountability.

The petitioner, in an online report, noted that much of the financial transactions of the PDP under Secondus had been shrouded in mystery, accusing the leadership of deliberate attempt to shortchange the party in the build up to the 2023 general election.