New Party May Emerge From PDP

…Aggrieved PDP Forces Coalesce Into Formidable Opposition Against Ali Modu-Sheriff-led NEC

imageA new political party may emerge from the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) presently enmeshed in a leadership crisis, according to feelers within the party.

The idea of the new party is among a number of options being considered by aggrieved PDP forces which have coalesced into a formidable opposition against the Ali Modu-Sheriff-led National Executive Committee (NEC) of the PDP.
The possibility of the new party was accentuated by the rigid stance of Modu-Sheriff, who became PDP acting national chairman on the festering crisis in the party which had polarised the party in virtually all the state chapters.
The crisis within the party was further compounded on Saturday, following discordant tunes over the conduct of zonal congresses designed to elect a new set of zonal officers across the six geopolitical zones.
The exercise held in Akure, the Ondo State capital, despite a court order obtained by a faction of the party in the South-West zone, halting the zonal congress.
Concerned PDP stakeholders, drawn from all the geopolitical zones, are consolidating on the parallel leadership structure they set up last week, to run the affairs of the party.
“We are not ruling out the possibility of founding another formidable and broad-based political party alongside like-minded people,” sources in the coalition told the Nigerian Tribune.
However, Modu-Sheriff is fighting back in his capacity as the acting national chairman, as he has scheduled a NEC meeting in Abuja today, after declaring he was not acceded to the demand that he should resign.
In addition, he said the national convention of PDP, scheduled for next Saturday, in Port Harcourt, would hold, regardless of the rising opposition against his leadership of the party.
It was learnt that while a case had been instituted by the aggrieved party elders to sack the present party leadership and stop next Saturday’s convention, as the Modu-Sheriff camp decided to convene the NEC meeting to save him and other members of his team, whose tenure lapses on May 21.
Last Thursday, the elders and founding fathers had expressed loss of confidence in the NEC under his leadership and constituted the 51-man committee to assume the responsibility of organising the national convention of the party.
The elders, under the coalition, Concerned PDP Stakeholders Steering Committee, comprise former governors, ministers, members of the National Assembly elected on the platform of the party, as well as former ministers and the members of the Board of Trustees (BoT) of the PDP.
The former governors include Attahiru Bafarawa (Sokoto), Mahmood Shinkafi (Zamfara), Abdulkaldir Kure (Niger), Mohammed Makarfi (Kaduna), Achike Udenwa (Imo), Babangida Aliyu (Niger), Okwesilieze Nwodo (Anambra) and Gbenga Daniel (Ogun), Lucky Igbinedion (Edo), Bonnie Haruna (Adamawa), Ibrahim Shema (Katsina), Donald Duke (Cross River).
The ministers in the group consist of Ojo Maduekwe (Transportation), Professor ABC Nwosu (Health), Dubem Onyia (Foreign Affairs), Bala Mohammed (FCT), John Odey (Environment), Professor Tunde Adeniran (Education), Inna Ciroma (Women Affairs), Adamu Maina Waziri (Police Affairs), Professor Jerry Gana (Information), Dr Abubakar Suleiman (National Planning), Tanimu Turaki (Special Duties), Ishola Sarafa (Solid Minirals), Zainab Maina (Women Affairs), Joseph Anenin (Women Affairs).
The other arrowheads of the coalition comprise a former deputy Senate President, Alhaji Ibrahim Mantu, Dr Doyin Okupe, Ambassador Nkoyo Toyo, Shehu Gabam, Chief Raymond Dokpesi, Rabi Ibrahim, Mairo Habib, Ambassador Wilberforce Juta, Ibrahim Bunu, Senator Joseph Akaagerger, Senator Zigo Azeez, Senator Ben Obi, Chief (Mrs) Remi Adiukwu, Dr. Bolere Ketebu, Professor Sam Oyovbaire, Senator Florence Ita-Giwa, Shittu Mohammed Kabiru, John Dara, Sen. Folashade Grace Bent, Awwal Tukur, Dr Doyin Okupe, Dr Patrick Okomiso, Senator Anietie Okon, Alhaji Aminu Yakudima and Mr Nichola Msheliza.
Former presidential spokesman, Dr Okupe, was quoted to have said members of the concerned PDP leaders would hold a meeting next week to its officers.
The meeting will be a follow-up to the one held in Abuja, last Thursday, where the concerned stakeholders announced the setting up of the 51-member steering committee to direct the affairs of the PDP.
They had also resolved to work closely with members of the BoT till proper lawfully organised national convention of the party would be held and new authentic leadership of the party emerge.
Meanwhile, more revelations have emerged from the opposition of the concerned leaders against the leadership of Ali Modu-Sheriff.
One of them was what one of the leaders said was the seeming pervasive state of insecurity in the South-South, where the Modu-Sheriff-led PDP leadership planned to hold the national convention.
There were claims that it would be difficult to categorically guarantee the safety of delegates expected to traverse the South-East and parts of South-South to the Port Harcourt venue of the convention.
The other grouse of the elders was that it would be politically-tragic for the PDP to have a substantive chairman, who would be expected to resign about six months to the 2019 general election, to pave the way for a northern presidential candidate for PDP, while the chairmanship would go to the South.
In another development, Senator Ali Modu-Sheriff, has apologised to aggrieved stakeholders of the party over statements credited to him by his personal aides and associates.
Modu-Sheriff, who gave the apology at a media briefing in Jalingo, on Sunday, said “as a well cultured and astute politician, I would never make any comment that would ridicule the party.”
He added that it was not in his character to join issues with highly respected elders of the party, noting that he never authorised any of his aides or political associates to react to issues raised by aggrieved PDP elders.

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