The war-of-words between some state Governors and President Goodluck Jonathan yesterday deepened with the assertion by the Niger State governor that any attempts at the “presidential level” to “clip the wings” of the governors would fail.
Dr. Mu’azu Babangida Aliyu who was speaking at an event in Minna, also attributed the crisis in the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to efforts to weaken governors within the party.
The Nigeria Governors Forum, headed by Rivers State Governor Rotimi Amaechi, has been at daggers drawn with PDP national chairman, Bamanga Tukur who enjoys the tacit support of President Jonathan.
Tukur had along with the President engineered the formation of the PDP Governors Forum; a move seen by many as a ploy to weaken the powerful Nigeria Governors Forum which Presidency officials accused of constituting itself into an opposition voice against Jonathan.
But in a defiant speech in Minna yesterday, Aliyu said the NGF was a registered association that could not be tamed.
“A governors’ forum is an association registered by Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC). An association is not a union and anybody who thinks whether at the party or presidential level can clip the wings of the governors is wasting his time,” he said when he received a delegation of the Northern PDP Secretaries Forum in Minna.
“The major part of the crisis of my party today is the desire to clip the wings of the governors. We must continue to talk the truth because that is the only way Nigeria will move forward.”
Earlier in his address, chairman of the PDP secretaries’ forum Aminu Yusuf, said they wanted to see Governor Aliyu in a higher position after ending his governorship tenure.
“Today you are the governor of Niger State and after that we want to see you up there,” he said.