Sen. Jubrin Is PDP’s BoT Acting National Chairman

The Board of Trustees (BoT) of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has appointed its acting Secretary, Senator Walid Jubrin as the new acting chairman of the board.

This was contained in a communiqué issued by the Board after its meeting on Wednesday in Abuja.

The communiqué was read by Jubrin, who said he would act till the election of a new BoT chairman.

He said that the meeting unanimously appointed him to replace its acting National Chairman, Haliru Mohammed, adding that he still remain the secretary to the board.

Asked why the board decided to relieve Mohammed of his appointment, the new acting chairman said the tenure of Mohammed had already expired.

“On May 25, 2015, we appointed the outgoing acting chairman, Mohammed to act for three months, when the three months expired, we decided to extend the tenure that has also expired.

“Very soon we are going to hold a meeting to elect a substantive chairman, probably the next meeting of BoT, we will do it properly and elect a substantive chairman,” he said.

He added that the BoT was in full support of the current initiatives by major stakeholders and all organs of the party towards restructuring the party to the part of internal democracy.

Also asked why the BoT decided to hold its meeting against the directive of National Working Committee to postpone the party’s organs meetings to next week, Jubrin said the board took it decision as a special organ of the party.

“The BoT has already called for this meeting. BoT is a special organ that regulates its activities. We can take our own decision.”

He added that the board would also attend next week’s meeting as scheduled by the party NWC.

NAN recalled that the PDP NWC had on Monday in a statement signed by its National Publicity Secretary, Olisa Metuh shifted the National Caucus meeting of the party to February 15.

It also shifted the Board of Trustees and the National Executive Committee (NEC) meetings to February 16.

PDP Postpones NEC Meeting To Next Week

The Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, says it has postponed its earlier scheduled National Executive Council meeting billed to hold tomorrow to next week.

In a statement signed by the National Publicity Secretary of the Party, Chief Olisa Metuh, the PDP said “In view of requests by critical stakeholders and leaders of our great party, the National Working Committee (NWC) has approved the shifting of the meetings of key statutory organs of the party earlier scheduled for this week to next week.”

“In the new schedule, the meeting of the National Caucus of the party has been shifted to Monday, February 15th, 2016 at 7pm. In the same vein, the meeting of the Board of Trustees (BoT) will now hold on the morning of Tuesday, February 16th while the National Executive Committee (NEC) meeting will hold at 2pm on the same Tuesday, February 16th, 2016.”

“The NWC deeply regrets any inconveniences that may be caused by this shift in dates.”

Osun Defender recalls a recent judgement by the court sacking the Acting National Chairman of the party, Mr. Uche Secondus had forced the various party organs to meet, in order to (s)elect a new chairman.

Former Minister, Mohammed Wakil May Emerge PDP Chairman

Power seems to be tilting in favour of former Minister of State for Power, Mohammed Wakil, to take over as the next chairman of the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

PDP governors and other influential stakeholders are said to be rooting for him over and above other aspirants for the position.

The choice of Wakil, who is from Borno State, is also said to have received the blessing of some members of the Board of Trustees of the party.

Notwithstanding, five other aspirants from the North-East have not given up on their ambition to lead the party.

They are the National Vice Chairman (North-East) of the party, Girigiri Lawal ; Second Republic Governor of the defunct Gongola State, Wilberforce Juta;  ex-Minister of the Federal Capital Territory, Bala Mohammed ; Deputy National Publicity Secretary of PDP, Abdullahi Jalo and Ahmed Gulak, former Special Adviser on Political Matters to ex-President Goodluck Jonathan.

The PDP governors, it was gathered, opted for Wakil on account of age, his cosmopolitan outlook and being receptive to advice.

It was also learnt that as a former Majority Leader of the House of

Representatives from 1999 -2003, Wakil may serve as a bridge builder between the party and its members in the Legislature.

A source familiar with the unfolding scenario said: “We have spent the last five days consulting across all the strata of the party.

“The PDP governors who led the search group, have met with other stakeholders and built a consensus on Wakil.

“Some members of the BOT and the National Working Committee (NWC) have also endorsed the choice of Wakil.

“The NWC and the National Executive Committee (NEC) of the PDP will meet during the week on the recommendation of Wakil and weigh options on others who have not given up.

“What we are trying to do is to avoid going into election in order not to cause fresh division in PDP. We cannot afford any move to divide us again.”

Another source said: “The governors and some stakeholders opted for Wakil because age is on his side. He is also well-respected by most leaders of this party. We need a bridge builder to reshape PDP.

“Wakil was born on 6 June 1965 in Damboa Local Government of Borno State and is a graduate of law faculty of the University of Maiduguri, Borno State.

“We also discovered that the North-East vital to PDP’s political calculations for 2019.”

Responding to a question, the source said: “The governors are skeptical about the choice of ex-Minister Bala Mohammed because he has a strong financial muscle and might be difficult to control.

“Some party leaders also cautioned the party not to pick Bala Mohammed because he just left a strategic office and the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari may join issues with him on the management of the Federal Capital Territory.

Those sympathetic to the ex-FCT Minister and four others are demanding for election of the candidate by the North-East Caucus.

They claimed that any imposition of a new chairman without the input of the North-East Caucus might not fly.

“These five aspirants have embarked on intense lobbying too. They have not given up at all. So, the next few days are left for horse-trading. In politics, a minute is important.

“Whatever the leaders of the party decide, we still have to make peace with Gulak who is in court.”

The PDP had last Tuesday slated a meeting of the North-East Caucus for Gombe to elect a new chairman but tension forced the party to shift the session.

Article 14.5 of the PDP Constitution says: “Where a vacancy occurs in any of the offices of the party, the Committee shall appoint a substitute from the zone where the officer originated pending the conduct of election to fill the vacancy.”

Ken Nnamani Resigns From PDP

A former President of the Senate, Ken Nnamani, has resigned his membership of the Peoples Democratic Party.

In a statement released in Abuja on Saturday, titled, ‘PDP, the burden and my conscience,’ Nnamani said he was quitting politics in the interim.

But he said he would support government and elected officials in Nigeria in their efforts to rebuild the nation.

He regretted that all efforts aimed at changing the fortunes of the party and also make those who run it change their ways had failed, adding that these set of people were bent on staying back to bury the former ruling party.

He said, “Without any iota of bitterness in my heart, I have decided to disengage from the PDP and consequently step aside from partisan politics in the interim.

“I wish to express my profound gratitude to the party that gave me the platform with which I attained the height I did in the politics of our country.

Punch

Apologize For Taking Me To Court, Okowa Tells LP, APC Guber Candidates

Delta State Governor Mr. Ifeanyi Okowa, has advised his opponent from the Labour Party (LP), Great Ogboru and his counterpart in the All Progressives Congress (APC), Olorogun Emerhor, to apologize for taking him to court despite knowing they didn’t win the April 11, 2015 gubernatorial election in the state.

Okowa made the call during a thanksgiving service in Asaba to mark the decision of the Supreme Court, which upheld his election in a unanimous decision, Osun Defender learnt.

The governor described the appeal against him as an abuse of the court process.

Mr. Okowa in the company of his wife, the former Secretary to the State Government Ovuozourie Macaulay, and other top government functionaries dedicated his victory to God.

According to the Governor, Olorogun Emerhor and Chief Ogboru knew they did not win the elections, yet, they went to the Elections Petition Tribunal to the Court of Appeal and then, to the Supreme Court, subjecting Deltans and lovers of the state to uncertainties.

“It is time to forgive and move on. I also believe that my opponents, Olorogun O’tega and Chief Ogboru should apologise to all Deltans, because, they knew the people’s choice but, they just wanted to go through this legal process,” he said, reiterating, “I have forgiven them but, I think they need to apologise to Deltans because, they distracted the people.”

“We should forgive them, it is time to love ourselves, see ourselves as brothers and sisters fighting solely for the common good of our people; it is time for us to break away from the past, to begin a new partnership; it is time to have a collective approach to governance – community governance because, on our part, we promise to carry every one along in love and unity.”

“I have forgiven them but, I think they need to apologise to Deltans because, they distracted the people,” Mr. Okowa stated.

New PDP Chairman To Emerge Tuesday

After months of bickering over who heads the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) following its loss of power in last year’s elections, the party now appears set to pick its new chairman.

Barring any disruption, the North-East zone of the PDP is due to recommend its preferred choice for the position at a meeting in Gombe on Tuesday.

There are three leading candidates to pick from: National Vice Chairman (North-East) of the party, Girigiri Lawal; Second Republic governor of the old Gongola State, Wilberforce Juta and ex-Minister of the Federal Capital Territory, Bala Mohammed.

The Gombe meeting may be followed by an emergency meeting of the PDP National Executive Committee to ratify the North-East nomination.

Former Special Adviser on Political Affairs to ex-President Goodluck Jonathan, Alhaji Ahmed Gulak is effectively out of contention after losing the goodwill of PDP governors, members of the National Executive Committee and the National Working Committee (NWC).

But the nomination of a new chairman from the North-East may lead to the postponement of the National Convention of the party by six months.

A well placed party source said the governors, the Board of Trustees and other stakeholders of the party have reached a consensus to concede the chairmanship slot to the North-East in line with the judgment of a High Court.

The source said: “We are getting closer to the resolution of the crisis rocking this party.

“We all met on Wednesday and resolved to retain the chairmanship slot in the North-East to complete the tenure of the former chairman, Ahmed Muazu.

“We have mandated the states in the North-East to meet on Tuesday or Wednesday to recommend a candidate to fill the vacant slot. The NEC will thereafter proceed to ratify the nominee on Thursday.

“At our last meeting, the three leading candidates leading candidates were the National Vice Chairman (North-East) of the party, Girigiri Lawal , ex-Governor of the defunct Gongola State, Wilberforce Juta and ex-Minister of the Federal Capital Territory, Bala Mohammed.

“But we are hopeful that more candidates may show interest on or before the zonal meeting. If we do not give the slot to the North-East, the PDP will technically die in the face of the law.

“Although Gulak is laying claim to the seat, all the governors, BOT members and other stalwarts have foreclosed his choice because of the manner in which he invaded the National Secretariat of PDP and declared himself as the new National Chairman.”

Responding to a question, the source said: “The Acting National Chairman, Prince Uche Secondus will revert to his position as the Deputy National Chairman.

“With this mutual understanding, the National Convention of PDP is no longer realistic in March. We may postpone the election of new national officers by six months. The timeline will enable us to reorganize the party.”

Apart from losing the support of PDP governors and other top national leaders of the party, Gulak has also lost the confidence of the majority of party members in his home state of Adamawa.

Party leaders in the state are throwing their support behind Juta.

The State Working Committee of the PDP, in a statement on Friday, rejected Gulak’s candidature for PDP chairmanship.

The state chairman, Chief Joel Madaki, said: “The State Working Committee of PDP Adamawa state chapter, after due consultation with party stakeholders in the state and beyond, and having thoroughly deliberated on the issues of the position of National Chairman of the party has resolved as follows:

“That, it is in the best interest of the party in the state that the position of the national chairman of the party returns to Adamawa state.

“That, it is hereby resolved to support the candidature of Ambassador Wilberforce B. Juta, a former Governor of the defunct Gongola state, one of the founding members of PDP, a member of G34, first National Vice Chairman (North East) of the party and currently a member of its Board Trustees for the exalted post of the National Chairman of the PDP.

“That, the party is calling up on all other interested members to patriotically lay down their personal ambition for the heighten interests of the party in Adamawa state.”

The Nation

Metuh’s First Statement After Leaving Kuje Prison

….Seeks Technical Assistance To Deepen Democracy In Nigeria

The National Publicity Secretary of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Chief Olisa Metuh today release his first statement since leaving Kuje Prisons where he had taken up temporary residence.

During a meeting today with visitors at the party’s national headquarters, Mr. Metuh said the PDP has since overcome the initial trauma that accompanied the electoral setback of the 2015 general elections, and is now poised to regain power at the center in 2019.

Chief Metuh said the recent variance of voices from its members is as a result of the party’s foundation of liberal democracy, which he described as a mark of strength, adding that the party has adequate internal mechanisms to resolve all issues within its fold.

The view of the PDP spokesman was contained in his opening remark at a meeting of the party’s Publicity Directorate with some visiting parliamentarians from the United Kingdom, led by Rt. Hon. Mark Field, member of Parliament and Chairman of International Office of the Conservative Party, and Colin Bloom, Director of Outreach-BCP in Abuja on Friday.

Metuh who refrained from talking about his prison experience and his trial for money laundering, told his visitors that the PDP faced serious challenges soon after it lost in the elections, culminating in the resignation of its National Chairman, a development that created some challenges within the party, but assured that every issue would be resolved by the party leadership by next week.

In his remark, Rt. Hon. Mark Field advised the party to ensure that it does not trash its brand in the face of challenges. He noted that while it is common for some party members to demand the removal of leaders after electoral defeat, care must be taken not to jeopardize institutional memory in the party.

“Never trash your brand no matter whatever the government of the day is saying about you”, he admonished the PDP.

The interaction was attended by PDP publicity staff, social media operatives of the party and officials of the International Republican Institute (IRI), who facilitated the visit.

Supreme Court Sacks Stella Oduah, Andy Uba From Senate

A panel of the Supreme Court Friday sacked two controversial senators Mr. Andy Ubah, Stella Oduah, and all other federal representatives from Anambra state in the 8th Senate of the federal republic of Nigeria.

This is not the first time Stella Oduah, a notorious minister under former president Goodluck Jonathan would be disgraced out office.

Osun Defender recalls Stella Oduah tendered her resignation after investigations revealed she forced an agency under the ministry of Aviation to illegally purchase and jack-up the cost of buying two bulletproof cars for her personal use.

Today’s ruling by the Supreme Court held that Chris Uba, younger brother to Andy Uba, and Prince Emeka are expected to take over seats vacated by Andy Uba and Stella Oduah respectively.

The Supreme court upheld an earlier decision by Justice Chukwu of the Federal High Court laying out the proper procedures for selection of the PDP’s legislative candidates.

In December 2014, the Federal High Court had ruled that it was only the constitutionally recognized state party leadership led by Ejike Oguebego that could organize the party primaries.

The Supreme Court’s ruling today, reaffirmed the High Court’s verdict, declaring that the Ejike Oguebego-led PDP executive had the sole right to hold the primaries in Anambra State.

Olisa Metuh Meets Bail Condition

Chief Olisa Metuh, Publicity Secretary and Spokesman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP)‎ has regained his freedom.

Metuh met his bail conditions, as stipulated by the Federal High Court sitting in Abuja, and was subsequently released.

Metuh was arrested and detained by operatives of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on allegations of diversion of security funds and money laundering.

He was also charged for tampering with evidence as he allegedly made attempts to destroy his statement by chewing it.

His party, the PDP had accused the government of selective trail saying Metuh’s incarceration was a ploy to gag the opposition.

Yayaha Bello On Excursion In Kogi Government House – PDP

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has said that the swearing-in of Mr. Yahaya Bello as governor of Kogi state is nothing short of a comical event organized by the APC.

The party said in a statement today that, “the said Yahaya Bello, who cannot claim the overall winning votes in the election is therefore a shadow-chasing passerby on an excursion in Kogi state government house, as the so-called swearing-in ceremony, having no bearing from the votes at election is at best an APC function.”

“The people of Kogi are aware that the man being paraded by the APC is not the person they exercised confidence in at the election as he scored a paltry 6885 vote in the so-called supplementary election as against the 204,877 votes polled by the PDP candidate, Alhaji Idris Wada in the overall election.”

“However, as a law abiding party, we hereby urge our members and the people of Kogi state to remain calm and not despair over this slap on democracy as the courts would soon deliver justice with regard to the authentic governor with the mandate of the majority at the election.”

Corruption, PDP’s Only Legacy – Pastor Chris Okotie

The Founder and General Overseer of the Household of God Church, Pastor Chris Okotie, says corruption is the only legacy left by the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP. This is coming as he pleaded for all Nigerians to support the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari  as he continues to clean up the corruption perpetrated by the Party.

Okotie, who contested for the presidency on three occasions, said Buhari was the epitome of transparency and discipline, adding that his attitude had rubbed off on the armed forces which had become more effective in the fight against insurgency.

He described the 16-year rule of the PDP as the government of the corrupt, by the corrupt and for the corrupt.

He said, “More than at any time in our history, we need discipline in the armed forces. And, thank God we have an ex-general, who is an epitome of discipline and transparency, in power. I urge Nigerians to support his anti-corruption campaign which aims to rid this country of PDP’s legacy of a government of the corrupt, by the corrupt, and for the corrupt.”

Meanwhile, Okotie’s party, the Fresh Democratic Party, has denied accusing the All Progressives Congress of planning to rig the forthcoming Rivers State governorship election.

The party’s Director of Media and Communications Strategy, Ladi Ayodeji, said in a statement that it had no hand in the allegation, adding that the allegation was the handiwork of the Inter-Party Advisory Council of Nigeria.

The statement read in part, “The attention of our great party, FRESH, has been drawn to an advertorial by the Inter-Party Advisory Council of Nigeria published in a national daily on Wednesday, January 20, 2016.

“In the said publication, IPAC listed FRESH as one of its (Rivers State chapter) members accusing the APC and the Independent National Electoral Commission of conspiracy to rig the forthcoming rerun in Rivers State in favour of the APC candidate.

“In the advertorial, one Chief Collins J. Ndegwe purportedly represented FRESH at an IPAC meeting in Rivers State, where our party joined other parties to condemn the alleged plot by INEC/APC to rig the APC into power in the state.

“Obviously, the IPAC, Rivers chapter, is in sympathy with the PDP governorship candidate and incumbent Governor Nyesome Wike. FRESH has no problem with that. However, it is criminal for anyone or group to drag our party into this unholy alliance.

“We would like to make it abundantly clear that Chief Ndegwe is not our member, and has never been authorised to represent FRESH in IPAC, or at any other forum for that matter.”