Akin Akande, Abuja
The ongoing drama within the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) with the party on Monday reacting to the call by Alhaji Abubakar Baraje’s led new PDP for the resignation of Bamanga Tukur, saying the G7 governors and Baraje had no institutional memories to call for his resignation.
The ruling party added that the Chief Alex Ekwueme’s reconciliation committee set up in 2007 by the leadership of the party gave Tukur and other expelled members a blanket amnesty and waiver to return to the party.
Addressing journalists in Abuja, the National Publicity Secretary of the party, Olisa Metuh, said: “In 2007 we set up Ekwueme reconciliation committee, the committee gave a blanket amnesty, a blanket waiver for all people, who had left the party or offended the party or the party sacked but free to come back and we wipe away every single thing and start on a clean slate as if it had never happened.
“So, what that meant is that even if it is true that the National Chairman or some other people had been suspended or expelled by the party, that Ekwueme’s report gave a blanket amnesty to them and brought them back and restore them to their original position.
“We have looked at the G7 or we have looked at this our aggrieved brothers, minus the governor of Jigawa state, we don’t think of any other person that has institutional memory to remember things that happened in this our party from inception.
“There is nobody there that has ever been in the party administration except our former National Chairman. And again only in 2008. So he would not know what has happened in this party before then.”
Metuh said that before Baraje came to the party he was not associated with party’s administration, adding, “there is no need to be throwing banters with people who do not have institutional memories and people who do not have records and people who never participated in any decision making during that period.
“The National Chairman of the party is a foundation member of this party and he is one of the founding fathers of the party. Now, apart from the Ekwueme’s report, for the National Chairman to go on a campaign and win a general election at the convention ground and nothing like this ever came up and nobody brought it up, it becomes completely immaterial of what they are saying at this point.”
The National Publicity Secretary called on the Baraje led faction to come out and explain to Nigeria why they are opposed to Tukur’s leadership of the party.
Said Metuh: “Are they afraid of Bamanga Tukur because he is moving the party forward, are they afraid of him because he is a strong personality, do they want the PDP to have a weaker Chairman, do they want the PDP that would not be supportive of the President as leader of the party, that is what we want to know.
“They should tell us why they are completely opposed to Alhaji Bamanga Tukur being Chairman of the PDP. We are worried about why they keep on harping on it and the more they shout at Bamanga Tukur the more we cherish the National Chairman that we have, the more we are proud of his achievements, the more we are more receptive to his ideas. They can continue pushing, Chairman is in charge of the party and we are happy with him,” Metuh said.