POLITICAL NEWS

Buhari plans to be sole candidate in 2019 – PDP

December 22, 2017

Peoples Democratic Party has alleged that President Muhammadu Buhari is planning to be the sole presidential candidate in the country during 2019 elections.

It argued that this was the reason agents of All Progressives Congress were bent on causing disaffection among PDP members ahead of 2019.

National Publicity Secretary of PDP, Mr. Kola Ologbondiyan, who spoke with journalists in Abuja on Thursday, said those who opened an “illegal office” of the party at the Asokoro District of Abuja were being deceived.

The former ruling party however said such plot would fail, adding that its members would not be deceived by the ruling party.

PDP declared that the plot by some of its members to form a parallel executive was being engineered by APC.

A group, made up of about five members of the party, had, on Wednesday, ‘opened’ a new secretariat for the main party.

The five members are Obi Nwosu, Hassan Adamu, Olusola Akindele, Godwin Duru and Franklyne Edede.

Ologbondiyan however alleged that APC was coming to reality about its unpopularity among Nigerians, adding that majority of its members would defect to PDP soon.

He said, “We will not allow APC to distract us. APC has become very worried since we held our convention. As we speak, the constitution of APC requires them to hold convention every two years but they have not done so.

“They are so unsettled that PDP is progressing and progressing progressively. That is why they are using some people to cause confusion in our party but we have gone beyond that.

“What is more important now is that we are embarking on membership drive to win more members back to PDP.

“President Buhari wants to be the sole candidate in 2019; that’s why they (APC) want to cause crisis in our party.

“We are going to stand as a party and we are going to fiercely contest elections in 2019. Our doors are open to Nigerians and anyone who is interested in contesting an election in 2019 can come in.

“I can assure you that majority of people still hanging around in APC are coming back home. APC is going to the next election as an empty party.”

He said APC, having failed to scuttle the national convention of the former ruling party, had realised that the convention “marks a new beginning in our sure and steady step to rescue our dear nation and her people from the misrule of APC.”

He said, “Recall that after our convention, APC attempted to inject disagreements and rancour among our members, particularly in the South-West, but also failed.

“However, following certain concerns on the outcome of our convention, our conflict resolution mechanism began to address the issues that will engender continuous harmony in our fold.

“Consequently, National Reconciliation Committee led by Governor of Bayelsa State, Mr. Seriake Dickson, met with critical stakeholders and leaders of our party in Abuja, Ibadan and Lagos, where very fruitful discussions were held on issues particularly relating to election into the office of National Chairman were better resolved or collectively agreed upon.”

He said it was, however, strange, unacceptable and outside every known law and regulation that a group of individuals would come together and claim to have formed a splinter group of PDP and even make attempt to use its colour, name and logo without authority.

He urged members of the party, who might feel strongly about the outcome of the convention, to explore the opportunities provided by the Dickson’s reconciliation committee in line with the constitution of our great party.

“Thereafter, any person, who for any selfish reason, resorts to the ignoble part of attempting to create disaffection and disunity in our party, will be made to face the consequences of his or her actions as provided for in the constitution of our great party and extant laws of the land,” he warned.

READ  Wife of ex-PDP national chairman defects to APC

But APC said PDP had yet to learn any lesson from its sordid past.

This, APC said, was evident in the ongoing squabbles which had given rise to a splinter group within the party.

National Publicity Secretary of APC, Mr Bolaji Abdullahi, said this in response to questions from one of our correspondents in Abuja, on Thursday.

He was reacting to allegations by PDP of the House of Representatives caucus of the party that APC was behind the new PDP faction.

Abdullahi stated, “We are not interested in these individuals; we are not interested in the internal affairs of PDP.

“Instead of looking for someone to blame, they should search their conscience and realise that nothing built on falsehood can stand.

“It is their falsehood catching up with them less than two weeks after their convention.”

 He believed PDP had no one to blame other than itself because it paid no attention to the grievances within its ranks when it went about town cerebrating what it claimed was a successful convention.

 “Their falsehood has caught up with them within two weeks, nothing built on falsehood can survive what they are simply demonstrating to Nigerians is that they have not learnt any lesson from their past. They should try to sort out themselves.” Abdullahi said.

But in a fresh twist, Chairman of the Board of Trustees of PDP, Mr Walid Jibrin, said on Thursday that the party was ready for talks with the new splinter group in the party, ‘Fresh PDP.’

Addressing journalists in Kaduna, Jibrin, who refused to refer to ‘Fresh PDP’ as a faction of the party, said he would rather refer to the group as aggrieved members of the party following outcome of the December 9, 2017 elective convention of the party.

Jibrin, who claimed to have had a fruitful discussion with the leadership of the new group, said from what he gathered from them, they were already remorseful over their action and ready for talks.

He explained that members of the aggrieved group said they were angry with the so called ‘Unity Lists’ used during the convention.

He said the election of Secondus as the party chairman of the party was divine, asking aggrieved members of the party to sheathe their swords and embrace the new National Working Committee of the party.

The BoT chairman warned PDP members against taking the party to court without exploring the internal mechanism put in place to address members’ grievances.

He called on members of ‘Fresh PDP’ to embrace dialogue, noting that the leadership of the party was ready to listen and address their grievances.

Jibrin urged members to guard against being used by ruling APC as according to him, the defunct Ahmed Makarfi-led national caretaker committee had worked so hard to reposition the party ahead of the 2019 general elections.

He said, “The BoT is also calling on all those that contested election with Secondus as chairman to accept the will of God, the verdict of the delegates and supremacy of the party.

“The BoT will no longer tolerate a deliberate violation of the constitution and any attempt by anybody, no matter how highly placed, to ridicule and undermine the party through any planned or sponsored litigation. The party has witnessed enough of these court cases.”

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