By Emeka Mamah
KADUNAâ€”Secretary, Political Committee of Arewa Consultative Forum, ACF, Alhaji Abdulrahman Mohammed, has been forced to resign his position following his insistence that President Goodluck Jonathan should contest the 2011 election.
Mohammed was asked to resign or face impeachment following his advice to former Military President, General Ibrahim Babangia, General Muhammadu Buhari, General Mohammed Aliyu Gusau and former Vice President, Atiku Abubakar not to waste their time in the election because â€œtheir political shelf lives have expiredâ€.
Abdulrahman was accused of allegedly using his position to campaign for Jonathan or using words that put the President at an advantageous position over other northern aspirants, claims he reportedly denied.
The Political Committee met in Kaduna, yesterday, to review the recommendations of an earlier committee over Abdulrahmanâ€™s utterances which were considered anti-north.
Sources said the Chairman of the Committee, Alhaji Mohammed Gusau, presided over the meeting which had other ACF chieftains like Burka Zarma, Col. Musa Shehu, Bitrus Gwada, among others in attendance.
‘I have right to own opinion’
It was said that Abdulrahman had insisted during his trial that he had the right to speak his mind in a democracy and did not see any reason to resign as suggested by the other members of the committee, hence he was asked to choose between resigning and impeachment and he chose the former.
According to those who attended yesterdayâ€™s meeting, Abdulrahman had also claimed that he had never spoken for the ACF as there were appropriate organs of the Forum to make comments on behalf of the group. But he was told that the media headlines did not make things clearer as they usually quoted him as an â€œACF Chieftainâ€.
ACF apologises to IBB
Earlier before his trial, about nine top members of the Forum were said to have visited IBB in Minna to apologise to him over the former Secretaryâ€™s comments in the media.
Abdulrahman had been very trenchant in his criticisms of past northern leaders, most of whom he not only described as greedy but of having under-developed the old monolithic north.
Mohammed on discrimination in North
Furthermore, Abdulrahman said that the â€œcoreâ€ northern leaders, or the Hausa-Fulani, discriminated against those of them in the periphery, (especially those in the Middle Belt or the minority Christians). He wondered how they hoped to win a free and fair election without unity in the north.
The ACF Secretary, Col. Musa Shehu, could not be reached for his comments on the sudden resignation of Alhaji Abdulrahman Mohammed, but Mohammed confirmed on telephone that he had resigned his â€œposition as the political secretary of the committeeâ€ although he is still a member of AC F.