PDP Crisis: Sheriff Apologises To Jerry Gana, Other Aggrieved Stakeholders Over Aide’s Comment

Ali-Modu-Sheriff-Jerry GanaThe embattled National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Ali Modu Sheriff, has apologised to aggrieved leaders of the party over statements credited to him by his aides.
Mr. Sheriff, who offered the apology at a media briefing in Jalingo, the Taraba State capital on Sunday, said “As a well cultured and astute politician, I would never make any comment that would ridicule the party”.
The PDP national chairman, who faces stiff opposition from some stakeholders within the party over his purported plan to perpetuate himself in office, was reacting to a statement issued by one of his aides, Inuwa Bwala, condemning the “Concerned Stakeholders” as a group out “to cause mischief” in the opposition party.
He also accused the group of coming up with gimmicks to divert attention from the effects of what they did in the past leading to the squandering of the fortunes of the party.
The “Concerned Stakeholders”, which comprises eminent politicians and founding fathers of the PDP led by former Minister of Information, Prof. Jerry Gana, had last week announced the takeover of the party from Mr. Sheriff.
The group, which issued a communique signed by a former Deputy President of the Senate, Ibrahim Mantu; a former Minister of Education, Prof. Tunde Adeniran, and media mogul, Raymond Dokpesi; at the end of its meeting at the Nicon Luxury Hotel in Abuja, rejected the decision of the party’s National Executive Committee, NEC, to extend the tenure of Mr. Sheriff to May 21, 2016.
The group said as far they were concerned, the tenure of the National Working Committee, NWC, expired on March 24, 2016.
The group said a national convention should have been held to either elect a new NWC or approve the composition of a caretaker committee.
Reacting to the Concerned Stakeholders’ position, Mr. Bwala described the group as comprising of “self-styled elders and stakeholders”, saying of its leader – Mr. Gana – “I have seen him sweating on television, playing with language but at the end of the day saying nothing”.
“I want to specifically say we kept sealed lips about some of the activities of this man believing that we could still find a rendezvous at which we could work together for the progress of the PDP. I must say, and there are witnesses that this is one character that attempts to play a role in every government since the time of the military”, the aide said.
He also accused Mr. Gana of collecting a loan of N500 million on behalf of the party but which was not accounted for, threatening to drag the former minister before the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC.
But speaking to journalists in Jalingo yesterday, Mr. Sheriff pointed out that it was not in his character to join issues with highly respected elders of the PDP just as he denied authorizing any of his aides or political associates to react to issues raised by aggrieved elders of the party.
The national chairman affirmed that the Concerned Stakeholders, just like any aggrieved member of the party, reserved the right to complain about issues affecting the party, which they considered inimical to the progress of the PDP.
He, therefore, urged any aggrieved member to bury the hatchet and join hands with the present leadership to rebuild the party and restore the confidence of Nigerians in it.
He stressed that the battle for 2019 general elections has started in earnest, adding that the party could not afford to remain divided if the desired goal was to be achieved.
“Under our leadership and the support and encouragement of stakeholders and supporters, PDP will definitely bounce back in 2019”, Sheriff assured.

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