Oyo PDP Endorses Ladoja For National Chairmanship

The Oyo State Chapter of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), has endorsed and adopted a former governor of the state, Senator Rashidi Ladoja, as its choice among those jostling for the seat of the national chairman at this weekend’s convention of the party.

The state chairman of the party, Alhaji Kunmi Mustapha, announced the endorsement and adoption after a show of hand vote, during a meeting held at the party’s secretariat in Molete, Ibadan, on Tuesday.

Professor Taoheed Adedoja, who is a former minister and chieftain of the party from the state, is among the lot seeking to be elected national of the party on Saturday.

“On behalf of Oyo PDP, we must vote for Senator Ladoja comes December 9. The South-West is the rightful zone to have the chairman of our great party.

“The South-East and the South-South have produced the chairmen before now and that is why it is our turn to have the national chairman.

Speaking earlier, Ladoja assured members of the party that if given the opportunity to serve, he would return the culture and tradition put in place by the founding members of the party.

Ladoja, who has been a Board of Trustees (BoT), member of the party, promised “never to compromise on things that are not right and are not in the constitution of the party.”

“I will do things the way they should be done and everybody will be happy. That was how our founding fathers were moving the party forward,” he said.

He argued that it would be best to fortify the defence for the PDP in the South-West where it only boasts of a governor with the position of the national chairman so as to make the entire southern part of the country a home for the party.

High Court to Resume Trial of Ex-Gov. Ladoja

A Federal High Court in Lagos on Monday adjourned until March 31, the trial of a former Governor of Oyo State, Rashidi Ladoja, charged with N4.7 billion fraud.
Ladoja is charged alongside one of his aides, Waheed Akanbi.

They are being prosecuted by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on an eight-count charge bordering on fraud.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the case, which was earlier slated for continuation of trial, could not proceed on Monday, as judges were said to be attending a conference.

The court’s registrar consequently, fixed a new trial date as March 31.
NAN recalls that EFCC had in November 2008 arraigned the accused on 10 counts of conspiring to convert properties and resources derived from an alleged illegal act, with the intention of concealing their illicit origin.

The EFCC also alleged that Ladoja used N42 million out of the proceeds to purchase an Armoured Land Cruiser Jeep, and remitted about 600,000 pounds to one Bimpe Ladoja in London.
Ladoja and Akanbi, however, pleaded not guilty to the charges.

N4.7bn Fraud: EFCC Seeks Arrest Warrant Against Ladoja

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission on Friday urged Justice Mohammed Idris of a Federal High Court in Lagos to issue a warrant for the arrest of a former Governor of Oyo State, Senator Rashidi Ladoja, along with his former aide, Chief Waheed Akanbi, for allegedly laundering N4.7bn.

A counsel for the anti-graft agency, Mr. Oluwafemi Olabisi, made the application on Friday following the absence of Ladoja in court for his proposed re-arraignment.

Olabisi told the court that the accused were invited to the EFCC, but that the duo did not honour the agency’s invitation and also deliberately stayed away from court.

He, therefore, urged the court to issue bench warrants against the accused, arguing that without their attendance in court, their trial could not proceed.

But Ladoja’s lawyer, Mr. Bolaji Onilenla, who said he was the one who instructed Ladoja to stay away from court on Friday, urged Justice Idris not to issue a warrant for the arrest of his client.

Onilenla argued that besides the fact that his client had not been properly informed of the re-opening of the case, his appeal against the charges at the Supreme Court was still pending.

Ladoja, who was first arraigned in 2008 alongside Akanbi, had since proceeded on appeal up to the Supreme Court to challenge the charges against him.

He also obtained an order to stay further proceedings in the case pending the outcome of the appeal.

But the Supreme Court on April 15, 2015 dismissed Ladoja’s appeal for being incompetent pursuant to the provisions of Order 6 Rule 3(2) of the Supreme Court Rules 1999.

However, Ladoja, who contended that he was not heard at all before the appeal was dismissed by the Supreme Court, had on October 27, 2016 filed an application seeking to re-list the appeal at the apex court.

Oyo Lawmaker Endorses Sheriff For PDP Chairman

A federal lawmaker, Dokun Odebunmi (PDP- Ogo-Oluwa/Surulere) said on Sunday that the Acting Chairman of his party, Ali Modu Sheriff, has the qualities to change the fortunes of the party if given substantive appointment.

He told journalists in Ogbomoso that Mr. Sheriff had within his short period as acting chairman demonstrated an ability to unite party members.

“I was at the meeting where it was unanimously agreed that our party chairman should come from the northern part of the country so as to balance up with the south where we have many PDP governors and other elected public office holders,” he said.

Mr. Odebunmi, the Chairman, House of Representatives Committee on Information, National Orientation, Ethics and Values, said the party needed a mature leader.

“In order to have a disciplined and organised party that can win election in the next political dispensation and subsequent elections, there must be a level playing ground for all and sundry in the party.

“We must reposition ourselves and embrace a transparent system of electing our leaders during the congress at all levels,” he said.

He also confirmed moves to woo former Governor Rashidi Ladoja back into the party, saying he would be an asset to the PDP.

Merger Talks Ongoing Between Accord Party And PDP In Oyo

A group of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) leaders in Oyo State visited Accord National Leader, Sen. Rashidi, Ladoja in Ibadan yesterday in furtherance of the merger talks between the two parties in the state.

Led by a former military governor of Lagos State, Brig. Gen. Raji Rasaki (rtd), the team discussed with the Ladoja team the need to integrate fully with the PDP before the national convention of the party slated for next month.

On the team were the State Chairman, Mr Yinka Taiwo; a former senator representing Oyo Central Senatorial District, Ayo Adeseun; a former Chief of Staff to Governor Adebayo Alao-Akala, Dr Saka Balogun; Mrs Bose Adedibu and proprietor, Jogor Centre, Mr Femi Babalola, among others.

According to a reliable source, Senators Teslim Folarin and Hosea Agboola were also billed to attend the meeting but they travelled for an urgent engagement.

The team was the committee set up by the state chapter of the PDP to work on the integration of Ladoja and his team into the PDP at the shortest possible time.

The source said both parties were yet to present their terms of engagement but that they have indicated willingness to work together in preparation to the 2019 elections.

It was learnt that the meeting went well with both sides looking forward to starting negotiations on the proposed merger.

Both the PDP and Accord lost to the APC in the 2015 general elections. The merger talks arose from the belief in both parties that the merger will produce a formidable party to contend with the APC in future elections.