The former president, in the letter, said he was withdrawing from all activities of the party because the PDP had been negating the principles of morality, decency and discipline in its decisions, especially as they affect the South West where he comes from. The letter, dated January 7, 2014, according to a source at the national secretariat of the party, was received in the office of Tukur on Wednesday, 8 January, 2014. It is believed that President Jonathan also got his own copy on Thursday.
Obasanjo accused the party leadership of imposing someone (names witheld), who he described as a criminal wanted abroad, on the party as its South West zonal leader and proceeded to add that he was forwarding with the letter, “recent documents” on the alleged activities of the person. Efforts to get copies of the “recent documents” by Saturday Tribune from both the PDP national secretariat as well as from Obasanjo’s side were, however, not successful but a source at PDP’s national secretariat confirmed that the letter came with attachments. He did not give further details.
A meeting of South West leaders of the party, it was gathered, will hold in Ibadan, Oyo State, today and may also come up with far-reaching decisions on the future of the party in the zone.
PDP governors give fresh conditions for peace
PEOPLES Democratic Party (PDP) governors have given fresh conditions for peace to return to the party and for the chairman, Alhaji Bamanga Tukur, to remain in office. Part of the conditions, according to information gathered by the Saturday Tribune, is for President Goodluck Jonathan to prevail on Tukur to return the structures of the party to them in their respective states as well as make them the leaders. Only after this would they agree to resume adequate funding of the party at all levels as well as its national secretariat.
Part of Tukur’s ‘sins’ is his alleged incessant interference in the affairs of the state chapters, which is said to have led to the setting up of caretaker committees for some of the chapters. The situation did not go down well with the governors, who saw the action as erosion of their powers as leaders in their respective states. The new development, sources close to the governors said, followed the intervention of some respected leaders of the party who reportedly counseled them on the implications of removing Tukur now that the 2015 general elections are around the corner.
Saturday Tribune, however, learnt that the development had created a sharp division among the governors, as some of them are still insisting that the embattled chairman must go as earlier demanded, for them continue to be relevant in the scheme of things in the party ahead of the 2015 elections. The likes of the governors of Jigawa and Niger states, who were members of the aggrieved G7 Governors before five of them defected to the All Progressives Congress (APC), and some others are said to have insisted that for genuine peace to return to the PDP and for the party to maintain its supremacy come 2015 elections, there must be a complete change of leadership.
However, one of the aides to Alhaji Tukur revealed that the cause of friction between Tukur and the governors was his insistence that the party must be returned to the grassroots, and that the constitution of the party must be followed to the letter to allow for due process in election of candidates for party or elective offices, rather than the old order of imposition of candidates by state governors without due process.