Edo LP crisis: Youth leader sacks state Exco, declares self acting chairman


Labour Party chairman in Edo, Kelly Ogbaloi

By Jethro Ibileke

The Kelly Ogbaloi-led executive committee of the Edo State chapter of Labour Party (LP), was on Thursday sacked by the youth leader of the party, Ken Omusi.

Omusi who added a new twist to the crisis rocking the party in the build-up to the 21 September governorship election in the state, also declared himself an acting state chairman.

Speaking to journalists at the state secretariat of Labour Party in Benin City, the youth leader named himself as the acting chairman, Stanley Orobosa, Secretary and one other as member as the three-man interim executive committee of the party.

According to him, the change of leadership was necessitated by the draconian and tyrannical leadership style of the disbanded state executive.

Omusi, who said he had been a member of the Labour Party since 2006, added that he had served under three national chairmen, namely, Dan Iwuanyanwu, Alhaji A. Abdulsalam and now Barrister Julius Abure.

He accused the Kelly Ogbaloi-led leadership of high-handedness, unilaterally suspending members without recourse to the party constitution.

He alleged that not less than 350 members of the party have been suspended by the state working committee in the last three months.

Omusi, alleged that the members were suspended on WhatsApp platform of Edo Labour Party chairman which has no the backing of the party.

“What is happening in the party in Edo State currently has never happened in the party anywhere else in the country even at the national level.

“The leadership of the party in the state have turned themselves into something else, instead of building the party ahead of the September 21, governorship election, they are now suspending members of the party on WhatsApp platform.

“That is how bad it is. I saw a short message on WhatsApp platform where members of the party are suspended.

Related News

“From February 23, 2024 till date not less than 350 labour party members have been suspended across the state in an election season like this. Where other political parties are trying to mend fences and resolves differences.

“Nor of these persons that were suspended were ever disciplined according to the party’s constitution. When a person is accused of misconduct, first thing is that you must on your own try your possible best to follow the disciplinary action (s). Nor of these people were called for a trial, but just outright suspension some from WhatsApp platform.

Omusi, who said, the former exco of the party have been dissolved, however, called on the national leadership of the party in Abuja to rectify their actions and resolutions.

“As we speak today, the state executive of the Labour Party led by Comrade Kelly Ogbaloi as the former state chairman and comrade Akhere as the secretary are hereby dissolved. All the 18 local government working committee and all the ward working committee are also hereby dissolved.

“Three man committee would be constituted for the state down to the ward level, so that we can call all our aggrieved people and put our house together before the forthcoming governorship election,” he said.

He stated that the change of leadership and the new acting state working committee members have been sent to the national leadership of the party for rectification.

Reacting, Kelly Ogbaloi, who said, he remained the substantive chairman of Labour Party in Edo state, said that Ken Omusi and his co travellers lack the legal power to remove any state working committee.

Ogbaloi, who said, he was in a meeting with the national chairman of the party in Abuja, said it is only the national working committee that has power to remove any state working committee member.

He, however, described the youth leader of the party as a brother, and vibrant noted that once he return from Abuja, he would invite him for a meeting with a bid to resolve and address any differences affecting members of the party.

He said: “I remain the substantive chairman of Labour party in Edo state. No part of the party has been dissolved. The group you mentioned have no legal right or backing to dissolve any executive of a state council.

“The only body that has that legal backing is the national working committee of our party and if that does not happen, nobody else has that power to do so.

“However, the situation in Benin City will be taken care of as soon as I am back. Though, I am speaking to them right now, and it is even my view that before I am back to Benin the situation would have been addressed.”

Load more