By Henry Umoru
ABUJAâ€”Governor Jonah Jang of Plateau State warned the national leadership of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), that if it must retain the state in the 2011general election, there was the urgent need for it to entrench internal democracy in conducting the affairs of the party.
Jang, who was referring to the dissolution of the state executive and replacing it with a caretaker committee by the Prince Vincent Ogbulafor-led National Working Committee (NWC), of the party, said the party was fast derailing from its original ideals, adding that if not checked now, the PDP stands the chance of killing itself in the state.
The governor was yesterday summoned to the party headquarters by the NWC apparently to find lasting solution to the lingering political crisis in the PDP family of the state.
It will be recalled that prior to the governor honouring yesterdayâ€™s invitation, he had severally refused to honour the partyâ€™s invitation.
According to him, â€œAs National Chairman mentioned that I just returned from India, certain things took place in my state in my absence without being invited by the National Working Committee (NWC) to tell me what has happened. I have been at the loss as to what has happened.”
â€œI believe that our great party; the party that is in total control of affairs of the nation is built on democracy. I was a founding member of this our great party. As a member of G-18 and G-34 that eventually metamorphosed into PDP, this party was built on the basis of democracy. It was built to take over the realm of power from the military and continue to build democracy in our great country.
â€œWhatever democracy that will succeed in our nation, the party in power since its inception is the one that will give internal democracy for others to copy so that our nation can stand on democracy.
â€œI, therefore, believe that the discussion we are going to hold here today will now look at what has happened and due process and the right of our people to enjoy democratic dividends will now then be put in place so that the party will continue to enjoy the support of the people of Plateau State and the people of our great nation Nigeria, particularly as we approach 2011â€.
Earlier in his remarks, Prince Vincent Ogbulafor, who reiterated the partyâ€™s decision to dissolve the executive led by Professor Dakun Shown and replaced it with a caretaker committee headed by Chief Abu King Shuluwa, however, appealed to the governor to assist in the implementation of the mandate of the caretaker committee.
â€œBut I want to let you know that the decision we the (NWC) have taken, we want you to help us implement it. We have given different thoughts and the NWC cannot actually be going up and down.
â€œThe members of Caretaker Committee are from Plateau. They are your own men and our governor is our leader. They are all his children. Like we told Senator Pam last time, bring the bill and they will work with you.
â€œI donâ€™t know why we cannot actually do that. I think the best thing we really have to do is to ask you to sit together and look at the advice of the NWCâ€, Ogbulafor said.
Some of the party elders from Plateau at the meeting includes the second republic Deputy Senate President, Senator John Wash Pam; Sen. George Baba Hoomkwap; former military Administrator of Delta state, Col John Dung (rtd); a member of the House of Representatives, Hon Martha Bodurin; and former Commander of the Nigerian Army Engineering Corps,Gen. Samuel Abok.