Our Successors Have Neglected Us, Ex-PDP Governors Cry Out
Former governors who were elected on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party said on Thursday that they were neglected by their successors.
They lamented that their successors relegated them to the background in the affairs of the party in their various states.
They said they were considering forming a forum of former governors and former deputy governors to fight their cause.
The former governors and deputy governors of the PDP spoke in Abuja when they met with the party’s National Chairman, Senator Modu Sheriff, at the party’s national headquarters.
Some of the former governors present were Babangida Mu’azu (Niger), Ramalan Yero (Kebbi), Gabriel Suswam (Benue), Ikedi Ohakim (Imo), Sam Egwu (Ebonyi), Abdulkadir Kure (Niger), Idris Wada (Kogi), Achike Udenwa (Imo), Ibrahim Shekarau (Kano), Gbenga Daniel (Ogun), Theodore Orji (Abia), and Sule Lamido (Jigawa).
The former deputy governors present included Iyiola Omisore (Osun) and Etuk Effiong (Akwa Ibom).
It was gathered that former President Goodluck Jonathan, his deputy, Namadi Sambo; and former governors Peter Odili (Rivers), Godswill Akpabio (Akwa Ibom), Donald Duke (Cross River), Sullivan Chime (Enugu), Liyel Imoke (Cross River), and deputy governor Muktar Shagari of Sokoto State were also invited to the meeting, but were absent.
Sheriff had earlier described the former governors and their deputies as stakeholders in the party.
He said, “As a former governor, I know what a governor goes through to win elections. You are the leaders of the party. Incumbent governors are also leaders too.
“Former governors must be carried along. They must be involved in all the affairs of the party so that we can get it right.”
Egwu, who spoke on behalf of former South-East governors and deputies, hailed Sheriff as the first national chairman to recognise former PDP governors and deputy governors.
He said, “This meeting has shown that the party has not forgotten those that started the party. Most of us were in the meeting that marked the beginning of the PDP.
“But the convention in Nigeria is that the moment you are out of office, you are forgotten. Former governors that we helped put in office forgot us. It was like frustration for most of us. But because we believed in the party, we stayed back.”
On his part, a former governor of Ogun State, Daniel, who spoke for the South-West, lamented that the party lost because what ‘we thought were greatest assets were perceived to be the liability’.
A former governor of Adamawa State, Bala Ngilari, who spoke for the North-East, described Sheriff’s emergence as good for the North-East.
Other former governors from other geopolitical zones spoke in support of Sheriff’s leadership and their readiness to remain within the PDP.