Jonathan in Desperate Move to Bring Back G5 Governors
In a bid to urgently rebuild the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) ahead of the general elections, President Goodluck Jonathan may set up a special committee that would help bring back the G-5 governors who defected to the All Progressives Congress (APC).
Also Friday, President Jonathan met with four governors from the North-east, the region where the chairmanship position of the party is zoned to, as part of efforts to pick the successor of former National Chairman, Bamanga Tukur, who resigned on Thursday.
Sources said following the resignation of Tukur, the President began moves to put the party in order even though some party stalwarts believed the move may have started late.
The party, which had been enmeshed in crisis since it held its mini convention last year had also lost 37 members of the House of Representatives and 27 members of the Sokoto State House of Assembly to the APC.
Sources said the president was now worried about leaving a legacy of a badly depleted and factionalised party and was already putting together a special team of prominent people that would help convince the defected PDP governors on the need to come back to the fold to help rebuild the party.
Although the idea of wooing back the aggrieved governors was sold to the President immediately after they defected to APC, the President, was said not to have given it a serious thought initially.
Sources informed that while the President was optimistic that four of the governors might shift grounds and reconsider their action, he had his reservations about the Rivers State Governor, Rotimi Amaechi, whom he believed may not return to the party.
He was said to have concluded that Amaechi had gone too far in his romance with the opposition and had expressed bitterness and hostilities than others and as such, might see a return to the PDP as politically suicidal for him even when such fears were unfounded.
It was gathered that while the governors and some lawmakers who left for the APC may not be as rigid as Amaechi, they also doubt the fact that the President would accede to some of their demands, including the idea of dropping his re-election bid should they consider his proposal to return to the PDP.
The source however said the president would announce the setting up of the committee and its members, among other reconciliatory initiatives that are being considered once Tukur’s replacement is announced next week.
But Adamawa State Governor Murtala Nyako, one of the G-5 governors that defected from the party last year has said under no circumstance would he return to PDP.
Nyako, along with Governors Rabiu Kwankwanso (Kano), Aliyu Wamakko (Sokoto), Murtlala Nyako (Adamawa), Ahmed Abdulfatah (Kwara) and Chibuike Amaechi (Rivers) had defected to APC last year in the heat of the crisis that bedevilled PDP.
Speaking to journalists at Yola International Airport yesterday, Nyako said the crisis within the PDP was beyond the resignation of Tukur. Noting that though he could not speak for other G5 governors, he said they had made up their minds to remain in APC.
“If they are nursing the idea to contact us to come back to PDP, it is still among themselves. The matter has not reached the defected governors. But as for me, I have made up my mind I am not returning to the PDP,” he said
“We have taken a very sensible decision to dump PDP for the best interest of this country. All of us have resolved to move forward not backward.
” We resolved to move to APC in order to move the nation forward and nothing is going to take us back,” he added.
The governor reiterated that the issue that warranted their decision was not about political party or personality but about the interest of the nation, to make sure that democracy was sustained.
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