By HENRY UMORU
ABUJA — NATIONAL Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Alhaji Bamanga Tukur, yesterday, bowed to pressure from President Goodluck Jonathan that he must reconcile with the Professor Jerry Gana-led Special National Convention Planning Committee in the interest of the party.
This followed a meeting President Jonathan had with Tukur, members of the National Working Committee, NWC, and some members of the Mini Convention Planning Committee where he told them that the lingering crisis must be resolved.
The PDP National Chairman, members of the NWC and some members of Gana led Committee thereafter went into a five hours meeting at the Wadata Plaza, National Secretariat of the party, with a resolve to end the problem.
Addressing newsmen at the end of the meeting, the PDP National Chairman who disclosed that the problems have been resolved, however, declared that the yet to be registered All Progressives Congress, APC, an amalgamation of opposition political parties was in trouble.
The PDP National Chairman disclosed that the Special National Convention Planning Committee would be inaugurated tomorrow just as dates for the South West congress and the mini convention will also be made public tomorrow.
According to Tukur, the resolution of the political quagmire was an indication that the party could always solve its problems, adding that it shows PDP as a working party.
The meeting were attended by the former Minister of Information, Professor Jerry Gana; former PDP National Chairman and past Minister of Defence, Dr. Haliru Bello Mohammed; Secretary of the Planning Committee and Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu and deputy Chairman of the Committee and governor of Akwa Ibom State, Godswill Akpabio.
Representing the NWC were Bamanga Tukur; Acting Deputy National Chairman, Chibudom Nwuche; Acting National Secretary, Dr. Remi Akintoye; Acting National Organising Secretary, Yusuf Hamisu Abubakar and Acting National Organising Secretary, Tony Okeke.
Vanguard gathered that prior to the meeting, there was apprehension that the committee may be disbanded and another person chosen as Chairman. It was however gathered that President Jonathan had warned against such a move which he believed will not be in the interest of the party.
Bamanga Tukur said: “The PDP is working with NWC on conduct of the Special convention. The NWC met with the committee to address issues affecting the conduct of the forthcoming convention. All party faithful should know that the party is one and we are working together. The Chairman of the planning committee is saddled with a very big responsibility to make sure that the convention works.”
PDP capable of resolving crisis
Also corroborating the National Chairman that the problems have been addressed and members of NWC and the Planning Committee are prepared to work together, Chairman of the Committee, Professor Jerry Gana said, “I like to confirm that we just concluded a very fruitful, peaceful meeting with the NWC under the able leadership of our Chairman and all the issues concerning planning and execution the special national convention have been fully and properly resolved, therefore we are delighted that the National Chairman will very graciously inaugurate formally the special convention planning committee tomorrow and the subcommittees of this committee also will be publicized so that they will now set to work effectively.
“We are also delighted that the party has shown that all issues can be resolved. We are pleased that the PDP has shown to Nigerians that at every point in time we do have the means of resolving conflict and to really face the future with determination, with a very clear sense of direction so that Nigerians can be assured that this is one party that can also solve the problems of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, because there will always be problems and the difference is the capacity and the ability to resolve them amicably.
APC in trouble
“I think it is also in order for us together with the National Chairman, the National Working Committee and members of the convention planning committee to express our profound thanks to the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, the leaders of our party for graciously calling a meeting yesterday, which produced this joint meeting today.
We like to thank the President, the Vice President for all the effort they are making and I will want to assure them that indeed the convention planning committee will work effectively and properly with the NWC to give the party and our party members a well organised national convention that will now elect the remaining members of the NWC. I think this is a very clear indication that the PDP is moving to really organise and be consolidated to face 2015.
“If anybody is thinking that the PDP was in trouble I think they must be thoroughly disappointed, because the PDP will always find solution and we are so delighted such solution is found today, so APC you are in trouble.”
It will be recalled that since the Planning Committee was put in place on June 20, at the National Executive Committee, NEC meeting, there had been a battle of supremacy between the committee members and Tukur-led NWC, with complaints that Gana and his men were operating as a parallel NWC.
Concerned by the crisis, President Goodluck Jonathan last week held a meeting with them three times where he pleaded that both Tukur, his men and Gana must sheath their swords and embrace peace in the interest of the party.
The President also urged Tukur, members of NWC and members of the Convention Planning Committee to go and perfect arrangements on the forthcoming national convention of the party slated for August 31st.