The sacked National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Senator Ali Modu Sheriff, has called on the party’s caretaker committee chairman, Senator Ahmed Makarfi and the party’s governors, to join hands with him in moving the party forward.
He made the call against the backdrop of Thursday’s order of interlocutory injunction by Justice Okon Abang of the federal high court, Abuja, restraining the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), the PDP and their agents from dealing with or according any facility required by law (regarding the governorship elections to be conducted by INEC in Edo and Ondo states) to any other persons or group other than the National Working Committee-led by Sheriff.
Speaking in Abuja on Friday through the Deputy National Chairman of his faction, Dr. Cairo Ojougboh, the former Borno State governor said there was urgent need for stakeholders to consider political solution to the party’s festering crisis.
According to him, the various court cases instituted by the various groups against the party could drag till 2019 and this could rob the party of the opportunity to present a common front for the next general elections.
While describing the PDP governors as the most vulnerable should the crisis continue, Sheriff warned that they could lose the opportunity for re-election.
Ojougboh said, “I appeal to governors and elders of the party to join hands with the leaders in moving the party forward. We need to find political solution to this crisis because the pending court cases could drag till 2019.
“We should be able to sit together and look at the problem dispassionately. The Port Harcourt convention was illegal so the caretaker committee is null and void.
“Sheriff is ready and willing to make peace but we must be ready to obey the rule of law and respect internal democracy. He is ready to hand over any day, but he is not prepared to be stampeded out office”.
The embattled national chairman claimed that the crisis in the PDP is all about the 2019 presidential ticket, adding that the political intrigues have pitched different groups and interests against one another.
While stressing that the courts cannot solve the party’s crisis, Ojougboh said Sheriff was willing to conduct a proper national convention to elect a new set of national officers to run the affairs of the party.
He, therefore, urged PDP governors and the party elders to formally dissolve the caretaker committee to enable the opposition party make headway.
“The PDP under Sheriff will not rely on government or governors to fund its activities because members will be made to pay their dues and a system of accountability will ensure the judicious use of the funds”, Ojougboh added.
He also described the awaited July 4 judgment by a court in Port Harcourt as a mere academic exercise, declaring that the June 30 ruling by another Abuja court had rendered the pending Port Harcourt ruling ineffectual.