– Ex-President Goodluck Jonathan said he needs to do more to reconcile the warring factions of the PDP
– He stated this during a meeting with members of the PDP BoT at his residence in Abuja
– Jonathan appealed to members to sheathe their swords in the interest of the party
Former President Goodluck Jonathan has agreed to intervene in the leadership crisis rocking the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) with the aim of resolving it.
Addressing a delegation of the party’s Board of Trustees (BoT) led by its chairman, Senator Walid Jibrin in Abuja on Wednesday night, Jonathan described the crisis as part of challenges affecting human groups and organisations. He said he has already started talking to the individuals involved in the matter privately and he believes he should do more, The Nation reports.
Jonathan has agreed to intervene in the PDP crisis According to him, the disagreement can be resolved amicably. The former president expressed regrets that there were conflicting court orders on the chairmanship position of the party, which complicated the situation further.
Jonathan said: “Unfortunately, we have been challenged, but I don’t think you should be discouraged. Challenges are part of life; in families there are challenges. There are challenges in the church more than what may be happening at the political level. So you should not be discouraged, and I believe, collectively, we can solve it.
“This should not be beyond us but I believe collectively, we can resolve it. Any sincere PDP member should know that the party is bigger than an individual. And many members have sacrificed their interests for the party.” He noted that he was aware of developments in the PDP since the crisis erupted.
The ex-president said Nigeria was in need a of a strong opposition party, stressing the need for the party to be strong to play that role. He commended the BoT delegation for visiting him at his Abuja residence for their effort so far in stabilising the party.
Speaking to newsmen shortly after the meeting, Chief Bode George said: “The meeting was perfect. I feel completely elated. When we were in power for 16 years all these crisis would have been resolved by the Villa. Now there is no Villa, it looks like a community where there is no headship. “Now, until another presidential candidate emerges, Jonathan remains the leader of the party. Of course he has been busy touring Africa, Europe and America.” He gave the assurance that before the PDP convention, every stakeholder would have reunited under one leadership.
Also speaking, Walid said the party is alive despite all that is happening and anybody who wants to destroy PDP will not succeed.
The PDP held a convention in Port Harcourt on May 21, where it sacked Ali Modu Sheriff as chairman and appointed a seven-man caretaker committee, headed by Ahmed Makarfi. Sheriff has refused to step down, insisting he remains chairman while the Makarfi-led caretaker committee was illegal. The PDP crisis took a twist when two courts gave conflicting ruling on the chairmanship position of the party. A Federal High Court sitting in Port Harcourt, the Rivers state capital, restrained Sheriff and Professor Adewale Oladipo from parading themselves as national officers of the PDP. On the same day, a Federal High Court in Lagos has nullified the national caretaker committee constituted by the party during the convention.
As a result, the party is split into two factions. While Sheriff is leading a faction, Makarfi is leading another faction. While Makarfi has announced August 17 as the date for the national convention of the party, Sheriff has asked the Independent National Electoral Commission not to monitor the convention.