…Makarfi expresses fear over prolong crisis
Chris Steven, Abuja
Twenty-three state chairmen of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), on Monday declared support for Ahmed Makarfi-led National Caretaker Committee of the party.
The chairmen also declared that Ali Modu Sheriff faction of the party was illegal.
It would be recalled that Sheriff had warned that any member of the party supporting Makarfi led PDP would be disciplined.
Appealing to Sheriff to toe the parth of peace, the state chairmen, who expressed their solidarity, when they paid a visit to Sen. Markarfi in Abuja, noted that the Caretaker Committee was the product of the party national convention, which Sheriff was part of.
Speaking on behalf of the chairmen, the PDP FCT Chairman, Yunus Suleiman, said “the Port Harcourt Convention was product of the constitutionality of the party. All of us were involved including Ali Modu Sheriff himself, which gave birth to this caretaker committee. The delegates to the national convention were driven from the 36 states of the Federation including FCT.
“And we all voted unanimously and endorsed the caretaker committee. This is our product. There is no any other constitutional body to be in this party other than the caretaker committee.
“Several attempts have been made. And we are also in the course to meet with him (Sheriff) and all other parties that feel aggrieved by the resolution of the convention. We urge all members of PDP to come back and resolve our issues internally”.
The delegation, which has in attendance chairmen of Nasarawa; Plateau; Enugu; Abia; kaduna; Ebonyi; Ekiti; Kogi; FCT; Akwa Ibom; Delta; Bayelsa; Kwara; Benue; Bauchi; Niger; Katsina; Jigawa; Ondo; Adamawa and Osun PDP chapters pointed out that they were not comfortable with the situation in the party.
Suleiman said: “We are not comfortable with the situation in our party at the national. No Court restrained the party from holding its convention. Sheriff exco was dissolved on the 21th of May so that the Caretaker Committee headed by Makarfi would led the party for three months to convey a national convention where national officers will be elected. We appeal to Sheriff to accept the decision of the party national convention. There will be another opportunity for Sheriff to serve the party.”
Responding, the National Caretaker Committee Chairman, Ahmed Makarfi warned that if the crisis in the party is overstretched it would be injurious to the success of the party in future elections.
Calling on the embattled former National Chairman, Sheriff to toe the path of peace for the resolution of the crisis, Makarfi said,
“It is unfortunate what is happening but equally it is good in the sense that PDP is alive. PDP is potentially a party people love; it is party that is like a government in waiting. If it is not worth anything nobody will struggle over it.”
He added that “we must not over stretch this fact for too long because this is injurious to the party and can affect the fortunes of the party in the long run, not only in our attempt to retain the states we have but also winning the states we lost and capturing power at the centre in 2019.”
Makarfi pointed out that the caretaker committee was not set up to witch hunt anybody or dissolve any state chapter of the PDP but to prepare for the party’s national convention and facilitate peaceful reconciliation of party member.
The former Kaduna state governor said, “the problem that will be there, after the national convention, those elected will have sufficient time to handle them. We believe that if we work together the issue will be handle peaceful.”
Makarfi added that
“If today the stakeholders of the party ask us to give way we will give way. We will not waste one moment to say the convention put us there for three months.
It’s about PDP.”
Meanwhile, the PDP governorship primaries committee for Edo State, under the chairmanship of Ebonyi State Governor, Dave Umahi, submitted its report yesterday to Markarfi’s caretaker committee.
He dismissed claims that the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) did not monitor the party’s primary.
The governor, also appealed to Sheriff to concede to the position of the party organs and seek dialogue, adding that he cannot be bigger than the party.