Northern Governors Forum Heading For the Rocks As More Members Threatens To Leave the Group
Few days ago, we reported that the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP and the Presidency has perfected plans to remove the Chairman of the Northern Governors Forum, Dr Babangida Aliyu and cause a split among governors in the forum. This we reported was necessitated by the role Governor Aliyu played in the election of the Governor Rotimi Ameachi of River state as the Chairman of the Nigerian Governors’ Forum, NGF and other governors who supported him.
Amaechi had two weeks ago defeated Governor Jonah Jang of Plateau state who does not only have the backing of the President but was also the consensus candidate of the Northern Governors Forum and the PDP Governors Forum.
Events playing out now indicates that the script is already being acted upon as more members of the Northern Governors’ Forum are preparing to withdraw their membership of the 19-member group in protest over the May 24 Nigeria Governors’ Forum election.
The governors said to be considering this moves are those sympathetic to Governor Jonah Jang, who heads a faction of the Nigeria Governors’ Forum.
Already, A formidable member of the Northern Governors’ Forum and Bauchi State Governor Isa Yuguda had on Sunday pulled out of the group.
The grouse is that since the they cannot see any reason why Governors Babangida Aliyu and some other governors in the group decided to support the candidature of Amaechi having picked Jonah Jang as the group’s consensus candidate.
Yuguda for example cited the breach of an agreement by his colleagues to support the Plateau State governor which formed the basis for his stepping down from contesting the Chairmanship position as one of the reasons why he is leaving the forum.
“I don’t see any reason why I should attend the Northern Governors meeting again. If that is what we will do, I am not going to be part of it. For the remaining two years of my tenure, I will not be part of the Northern Governors’ Forum,” he told an Abuja-based newspaper.
He challenged other northern governors who allegedly betrayed the understanding reached during the forum’s meeting to own up and face him.
Although, the number of the pro-Jang governors that might leave the 19-member Northern Governors’ Forum is not yet known, we learnt that one of them is in the North Central while another is in North-West.
Meanwhile, the Middle Belt Youth Leaders’ Forum called on Aliyu to resign as chairman of the Northern Governors’ Forum.
Its National Secretary, Mr. Philip Agbese, told journalists in Abuja that “the planned removal of Governor Aliyu as Chairman of the Northern Governors’ Forum or expiration of his tenure is a development that must be applauded because posterity will not forgive the very actors who have decided to play politics with the unity of the North, which used to be our political bargaining power.”
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