The crisis in the Ekiti State chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) deepened at the weekend, with party leaders in Irepodun/Ifelodun Local Government Area calling for Secretary Dr Tope Aluko’s expulsion.
Aluko allegedly stormed the venue of a meeting of the party at Igede-Ekiti and shot into the air to disperse the people.
Three persons were reportedly injured in the melee as people scampered for safety. They are said to be hospitalised.
The party leaders accused Aluko of some offences, saying his activities were dangerous.
Aluko was elected on March 18 during the state congress.
The leaders also called for the expulsion of Mr. Dapo Olagunju and Mr. Deji Aluko, two leaders of the party in the community, for allegedly fueling the crisis in the party.
A leader of the party in the area, Evang. Gbenga Adekunle Moses, described the action of the trio as having “the potentials to permanently castrate the party in the state”.
Moses urged President Goodluck Jonathan and the PDP National Chairman, Alhaji Bamangar Tukur, to suspend Aluko “pending conclusion of investigations into the matter”.
He said the party has petitioned Police Commissioner Ibrahim Maishanu, adding that Aluko, who is a friend of former Governor Ayodele Fayose, has been invited for questioning on the matter.
Moses said: “We were in the meeting when, suddenly, the man, who claimed to be the PDP Secretary, emerged in a Peugeot 406 car and fired a gunshot into our midst.
“In fact, some of our members had to escape through the windows and fled for their lives. Many people were injured. This community is one of the strongholds of the PDP in Ekiti State. In the last election, we recorded about 4,000 votes while Aluko could only record 300 votes in Iyin-Ekiti for the PDP.
“This is an unfortunate incident for a man of his calibre. We want him expelled from our party for dragging the name of the party into the mud.”
Since the March state congress, where candidates loyal to Fayose won the key positions, members loyal to the former Governor Segun Oni have formed a parallel exco.
Aluko denied the allegation. He said the group stormed Liberty Hotel in Igede-Ekiti and attacked a former council Chairman, Mr Toba Daramola, and Chief Femi Akomolafe.
The party secretary said the former council chief had called a meeting to resolve some issues when about 200 youths stormed the venue.
According to him, the two party leaders denied Igede-Ekiti the position of Secretary.
Aluko said: “The hotel was damaged by the gun-wielding hoodlums. It is there for you to see.”
Aluko added: “When Akomolafe and Daramola were attacked, they called on me. I had to go there as a party leader. As soon as they sighted me, they started attacking my car. I fled the scene immediately and called the DPO, who later intervened.”