The civil war in the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) is likely to escalate, with aggrieved governors giving four conditions for peace.
They tabled the conditions at a meeting on Sunday night with President Goodluck Jonathan, 16 governors, and the Chairman of the Board of Trustees (BoT) of a faction of the party, Chief Tony Anenih.
The conditions are that:
•factional National Chairman Bamanga Tukur should be sacked;
•President Jonathan should do one term only and forget re-election in 2015;
•the Nigeria Governors Forum (NGF) and Rivers State crises should be resolved; and
•”harassment” of governors by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) should be stopped…
Attempts were made to narrow the conditions to two but no progress was made, The Nation learnt.
The two factions only succeeded in setting agenda for resumption of talks today.
But the National Secretary of the Atiku-Governors faction of the PDP, Prince Olagunsoye Oyinlola, said yesterday that despite the intervention by Jonathan, ex-President Olusegun Obasanjo and other party leaders, members of the New PDP would not abandon their struggle.
Oyinlola, who issued a statement in Abuja, said the faction would not disappoint members in the mission to make the PDP work again in the interest of Nigeria and its people.
Sources said that Sunday’s meeting was a no-holds-barred type, with Jonathan feeling overwhelmed.
It was gathered that the seven governors, who were represented by four of their colleagues, complained lack of internal democracy in the party and “repression” by the Presidency.
“The governors demanded the removal of the factional National Chairman of PDP, Alhaji Bamanga Tukur to have genuine reconciliation in the party, a source said, adding: “They also asked the President to stick to the agreement he purportedly had with party leaders to spend one term in office. They urged Jonathan to come out openly on his rumoured re-election bid in 2015.
They listed the crises in the NGF and Rivers State and promotion of parallel party structure in some PDP states as their grouses.
Another source at the session said Kwankwaso spoke first, complaining against the use of EFCC by the Presidency to witch-hunt governors who have mere political disagreements with the President.
Said the source: “Kwankwaso cited the arrest and prosecution of a son of the Governor of Jigawa State, Alhaji Sule Lamido, by the EFCC. He insisted that the prosecution of Lamido’s son was triggered by the Presidency when it was obvious that the victim was on a medical trip to Egypt.
“Kwara State Governor Abdulfatah Ahmed, whose brother was recently grilled by one of the anti-graft agencies over alleged N60million contract, was quoted as saying ‘I have been facing EFCC probe because I served in the executive of Senator Bukola Saraki. There is an atmosphere of fear in Kwara over activities of the EFCC’.
Governors Jonah Jang, Godswill Akpabio, and Gabriel Suswam reportedly pleaded for understanding.
Jonathan, according to the sources, described the party’s challenges as “resolvable”.
Another source quoted Jonathan as follows: “All the problems analysed are within human capacity, we will address them.
“Those within my powers, I will address them personally and those for the party, I will get the party to address them
“But we should all remember that PDP is a party in all localities in Nigeria and because of that we will not allow anything that will undermine the PDP.”