A major crack has emerged within the ranks of the New Peoples Democratic Party (nPDP) bloc in the All Progressives Congress (APC) as some members of the group, yesterday, dissociated themselves from the petition written to the leadership of the ruling party and President Muhammadu Buhari. A former Governor of Nasarawa State and Chairman, Senate Committee on Agriculture, Abdullahi Adamu, yesterday alleged that some members of the nPDP were plotting to destroy the APC before defecting to another party. Abdullahi, who made the allegation yesterday at the National Secretariat of the APC, said there was no truth in the claims made by the nPDP in their recent petition to the leadership of the ruling party.
The nPDP, led by a former Acting National Chairman of PDP, Alhaji Kawu Baraje had, last week, led a group of nPDP to the APC national secretariat with a petition addressed to the APC National Chairman, Chief John Odigie- Oyegun. The petition chronicled a number of grievances and gave the APC a seven-day ultimatum to address the issues. In the petition, the group alleged that the government that they helped to form in 2015 had not been fair to them, but rather has been persecuting their members.
However, another faction of the nPDP, led by Adamu, said that the letter from the Baraje faction was full of contradictions, false assertions, misrepresentations, distortion of facts and, in many instances, outright lies.
In a separate petition to the party, the Adamu faction disassociated itself from the activities of the Baraje faction, accusing it of falsehood. The petition was signed by Adamu as Chairman; Chief Theodore George, Deputy Chairman and Hon. Abdulmumin Jibrin as Secretary.
The splinter group’s petition read in part: “We received with great shock and embarrassment the news that a former Acting Chairman of the PDP, Alhaji Kawu Baraje led four others to deliver a letter they claimed on behalf of the nPDP, which is defunct and has long dissolved into the APC during the 2013 merger.
“In the letter, Baraje stated that we members of the then nPDP group are being marginalized, maltreated and witchhunted in the APC and requested for an urgent meeting with the party and Mr. President within one week.
“As members of the then nPDP, we are aware that the last meeting that was held by the group was in 2014. Since then, no meeting has been called. Where did Alhaji Baraje and Col. Olagunsoye Oyinlola obtain the alleged resolution to write the said letter? When and where was the meeting held? Who are those that attended the meeting? “We ordinarily would have ignored such a joke, but it is a dangerous joke taken too far.
How can you explain that one of the two signatories to the letter, Col Olagunsoye Oyinlola (rtd) has since left the APC for the African Democratic Congress (ADC) after going on AWOL to the Obasanjo Coalition for Nigeria? Yet same person is asking to meet the APC leadership to address grievances.
This clearly shows the sinister motive behind the letter, which is not far from destabilizing the party at this most critical time. “In any case, the letter is full of contradictions, false assertions, misrepresentations, distortion of history and facts and, in many instances, outright lies. We as initiators and founding members of the defunct nPDP, therefore, wish to condemn and disassociate ourselves from the letter and apologise for the obvious embarrassment the letter has caused to our party and government.
“We wish to reaffirm our support and confidence in the party and Mr. President and we do not, in any way, feel marginalized or maltreated as we are clearly in the league of the biggest beneficiaries of the party. For the purpose of correcting the misleading contents of the letter and setting the records straight, it is pertinent that we provide some facts on some of the issues raised in the letter.”
The petitioners chronicled the long list of nPDP beneficiaries in the present administration, as they noted that:
“All the key stakeholders of the nPDP were accommodated as follows: Senator Bukola Saraki – Senate President; Hon. Yakubu Dogara – Speaker, House of Representatives; Abdullahi Adamu – Senator and Chairman, Senate committee on Agriculture; Adamu Aliero – Senator and Chairman, Senate Committee on Customs, Magatakarda Wamakko –Chairman, Senate Committee on Education; Rabiu Kwankwaso –Chairman, Senate Committee on National Planning.
“Others include; Senator Danjuma Goje- Senator and Chairman Senate Committee on Appropriation, Senator Abdulaziz Nyako- Senator and Chairman Senate Committee on Special Duties, Senator Uchendu- senator and Vice Chairman, Governor Aminu Tambuwal – Governor Sokoto State; Governor Abdullahi Ganduje – Governor Kano State; Governor Abdulfatah Ahmed of Kwara State; Senator Jibrilla Bindow, Governor Adamawa State; Senator Atiku Bagudu – Governor Kebbi State and Kawu Baraje – Board chairman.
“We believe that the nPDP has many leaders of high integrity, but we must be careful not to use the group to cover up for any individual who fall foul of the law. We must support the anti-corruption stance of the government and ensure that the law takes its course in accordance to the laws of our land without minding whose ox is gored.
“We will resist any attempt to smear our government through posturing or using the platform of the defunct nPDP as shield against crimes that might have been committed against the state even before the merger of the defunct nPDP and the APC and beyond.
“We wish to state categorically clear that we recognize and concede the right of every member of our party, the APC, including members of the defunct nPDP, to hold their opinion on what they desire government or the party to do for them, but what they desire should only be justifiable but enforceable,” the group said.