Aliyu, Ohakim back chairman’s ouster
•North rejects Jonathan as BoT chair
•President backs moves to revive party
The agitation for resignation of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) National Chairman, Mallam Adamu Muazu, has polarised the party’s governors.
Several PDP Northern governors have thrown their lot with the embattled party boss.
Championing his exit are the Southsouth and Southeast governors as well as Governor Ayo Fayose of Ekiti State.
Governor Babangida Aliyu of Niger State yesterday publicly identified with their position.
Muazu is under increasing pressure to resign following the PDP abysmal performance in the recent elections.
The immediate past governor of Imo State, Ikedi Ohakim, yesterday joined in the Muazu-must-go campaign.
The party chair himself has warned that continuation of the tradition of use- and- dump, which terminated the tenures of his predecessors, is not in the best interest of the party.
He said in a statement penultimate weekend that the only way forward for the PDP in the aftermath of the recent election is to rebuild and re-strategise ahead of the 2019 polls.
President Goodluck Jonathan yesterday promised to work with the PDP Post- Election Review Committee to return the party to its lost glory.
He told the Ike Ekweremadu-led committee in Abuja that everything will be done to ensure that PDP does not only present a credible opposition for the country but also work to return to power in 2019.
Multiple party sources told The Nation that the Muazu-must-go campaign is threatening to put PDP Northern governors and their Southern counterparts on collision course.
One source said that at a recent meeting PDP Northern governors resolved to mobilise party chieftains across the North to resist the move to sack Muazu, and what is seen as an attempt by the Southeast and the Southsouth to hijack the party.
“Governors at the meeting insisted that the plot to remove Muazu does not enjoy the support of President Goodluck Jonathan.
“According to them, those behind the divisive move are merely popularizing their intention by dropping the name of the President,” the source said.
The convener of the meeting, a Northwest governor, reportedly said he had spoken with Jonathan on the issue and the President swore he is not a party to the plan to change the leadership of the party before or after his exit from office.
The governors agreed to remain in the PDP and ensure that all organs of the party are allowed to complete their tenure, the source said.
Another source said that following the stand of the Northern governors, their Southern counterparts tabled a modified plan to replace the Muazu-led executives with a caretaker committee.
This was also reportedly rejected by the PDP Northern governors, who similarly kicked again an alleged plan to install President Goodluck Jonathan as chairman, Board of Trustees (BoT) of the party.
One of the sources said: “There is an imminent clash of interest amongst the governors.
“There seems to be no way to bring them to an agreement because some governors, especially those from the Southsouth, are still going about how to reposition the party without Muazu and his executives.
“Even as we speak, they had a meeting where it was resolved that the Southsouth should produce the next chairman while the Southwest should retain the Secretary.
“The decision of three Northern governors who were previously part of the ‘Muazu Must Go’ plot to pull out could not even convince these governors to dump the plot.
“So unless something gives way soon, any plan to change the leadership of the party and even the BoT in the nearest future will pitch our governors against one another along regional lines. This is obviously not good for the PDP.”
Jonathan backs moves to revive PDP
President Jonathan receiving the at PDP Post- Election Review Committee at the State House yesterday said he was in support of efforts to return the party to its lost glory.
Chairman of the committee and Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu, told State House correspondents after the committee met with President Jonathan said he assured the committee that everything would be done to ensure that PDP does not only present a credible opposition for the country but also return to power in 2019.
He said: “Mr. President has given us his word that he will encourage and support this process and that he is interested in the party returning to its past glory and that he is going to do everything to ensure that we remain intact and we also agreed that all bickering have to stop so that we have a position that will enable us to rebuild our party.”
Asked why the party could not manage its success, Ekweremadu said: “When you have this kind of situation, the first reaction will be blame game. But I think we have been able to absorb that shock and right now I can assure you that all that bickering has stopped.
“We are now ready to rebuild our party and be able to present a credible opposition for this country that will ensure us return to power in 2019.
“We are ready to hold the new government accountable and make sure that the promises they have made that we will be able to benchmark each of them appropriately so that it will not be that they have deceived Nigerians and got their votes.
“They are going to account for their statements, their promises. We will hold them accountable to all the promises.”
Aliyu, Ohakim back Fayose, demand Muazu, others’ resignation
Governor Aliyu of Niger State and the immediate past governor of Imo State, Ikedi Ohakim, yesterday joined in the call for the resignation of the members of the Peoples Democratic Party’s National Working Committee (NWC) led by the party’s chairman, Mallam Adamu Muazu.
Like Fayose, they said Muazu and other PDP’s NWC members should take a cue from the leaders of the British Labour Party,UKIP and the Liberal Democratic Party who resigned as soon as it was clear that their parties had lost last Thursday’s election.
Aliyu, speaking in Dutse, Jigawa State capital, at the inauguration of a township road named after the ‘G7 Governors’ by Jigawa State Governor, Sule Lamido, said any politician, who leads his party to defeat , has no reason to remain in office.
“It is unfortunate that people have to be called to resign. The leaders are supposed to voluntarily resign their positions for the loss at the just concluded general elections,” he said.
“It is unfair that they are threatening to form a factional PDP because they were asked to resign,” he added in reference to the crisis brewing in the party on account of its disastrous outing in the polls.
He said the PDP members must imbibe morality and principle if the party must succeed in the future, arguing that what happened in the United Kingdom election on Thursday was a reflection of those virtues.
In a separate statement, Ohakim said more people will, in the days ahead, demand Muazu’s exit because “regardless of the defeat it suffered at the just concluded general elections, Nigerians believe that the PDP should be nurtured back to life to play the role of a creditable opposition for the growth of our democracy.”
He said Muazu should quit without further delay, adding: “I am aware that for reasons that have to do with the Nigerian factor, Mallam Muazu may find it difficult to submit to the wishes of Nigerians.”
Governor Ayodele Fayose of Ekiti State had engaged PDP National Chairman, Alhaji Adamu Muazu, in a war of words over the defeat of the party in the 2015 general elections, calling on Muazu and others in the party’s National Working Committee to resign.
Muazu vowed penultimate weekend that he won’t quit.
He said the PDP should be tired by now of its impunity of using and dumping its chairmen.
At the Dutse event yesterday, Aliyu, who expressed delight on the naming of streets after the ‘G7 Governors’, commended Lamido for his vision in terms of history.
G7 refers to the seven PDP governors who walked out of the party’s national convention in Abuja in 2013 to protest alleged undemocratic tendencies in the party.
These were Lamido,Aliyu,Rotimi Amaechi (Rivers),Aliyu Wamakko (Sokoto),Murtala Nyako (Adamawa),Ahmed Abdulfatah (Kwara), and Rabiu Kwankwaso (Kano).
All of them save Aliyu and Lamido later teamed up with the then ACN, ANPP and CPC to form the APC.