FOR the embattled National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Prince Vincent Eze Ogbulafor, the party ended on Wednesday, 13th May, 2010, for a journey he started on March 8, 2008.
Though there was the need for him to resign to enable him prepare for his trial at the courts, his resignation was the result of horse trading between the governors and the president.
It was gathered that if the present government of Jonathan must be seen as very serious, the PDP National Chairman, following his prosecution at an Abuja High Court, alongside three others by the Independent Corrupt Practices Com-mission, ICPC over a 16-count criminal charge involving N2.3 billion fraud must leave and the governors agreed, even though they had backed him in the early days of the crisis.
Another major issue the governors were said to have conceded to was the 2nd term for 23 of them who want to come back as governors of their states. According to source, it became imperative for them not to fall out with the president, who is the leader of the party, just as he would determine what will happen as the party starts its primaries.
It was also revealed that the governors at the Wednesday meeting agreed to meet the president half way. I will accept your candidate, Architect Namadi Sambo, the present Governor of Kaduna State as the Vice President, but accept that Ogbulafor must go. And the gentlemanâ€™s agreement scaled through.
It became a reality, in the sense that Ogbulafor had on Wednesday, while answering questions from journalists said he had no plans to resign and that he was still the National Chairman of the Party, but that was not true because barely 24 hours he made the statement, he resigned.
In his letter of resignation, he said, â€œIn view of the my recent meetings and discussions with Mr. President, Dr. Goodluck Jonathan, GCFR, and the Governors of Peoples Democratic Party(PDP) extraction, I hereby give 30 days notice of my intention to resign as the National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party(PDP).
â€œThis is in strict compliance with the provision of Article 14.4 of the Constitution of the PDP, 2009(as amended) as follows: â€œAny officer elected into the Executive Committee of the Party at any level may resign his or her office by giving 30 days notice in writing to the appropriate Executive Committee, except in the case of resignation for the purpose of vying for an elective office which shall be effective within the period stipulated in the guideline issued for such elective office by the National Executive Committee of the Party.â€
The letter, which he copied to President Goodluck Jonathan and the Kwara State governor and Chairman, Governorsâ€™ Forum, Dr. Bukola Saraki,further read, â€œthis resignation was informed by the case I have with the Independent Corrupt Practices and Related Offences Commission, (ICPC) in court; for it will give me an ample opportunity to prepare and face my case frontally in order to prove my innocence; and for the interest of our Party and the nation at large.
â€œMore so, this resignation will prove to the world that some Nigerian leaders can vacate high offices in order not to be seen as using such office to obstruct justice.
â€œOnce again, let me reiterate that I am innocent of all those ICPC allegations and I am confident that I will be vindicated.