By Dayo Johnson, Gbenga Oke, Dirisu Yakubu, Daud Olatunji & Rotimi Ojomoyela
ABUJA—AGAINST the background of Governor Nyesom Wike’s alleged attack on the South West caucus of Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Governor Seriake Dickson of Bayelsa State has appealed to party chieftains to be cautious in their utterances in order not to escalate the tension in the party.
Dickson, who is chairman of the party’s Post-Convention Reconciliation Committee, made the assertion just as the new party chairman, Prince Uche Secondus, yesterday vowed to ensure that all tendencies in the party were completely accommodated.
Dickson made his plea to party members to be cautious, following the first formal meeting of the reconciliation committee on Monday night, saying the caution was needed to maintain mutual respect needed towards enhancing peaceful cohabitation and understanding.
In what appeared a veiled reference to Governor Nyesom Wike, whose alleged vitriolic attack against the South-West culminated in the eleventh-hour withdrawal from the chairmanship race by Olabode George; Governor Dickson called for restraint on the part of party leaders, in the interest of the party.
“We want to appeal to our leaders and members to be careful of their utterances. We don’t want a situation where utterances that are provocative are made by leaders because they can inflame passion, misunderstood and used to convey unintended meanings.
“ Our appeal to our party leaders and members is to exercise caution and above all, show respect to one another because in the end, we are all members of one family and citizens of the Federal Republic of Nigeria,” he added.
While congratulating members of the new National Working Committee, NWC, of the party for their victory at the convention, Dickson pledged the readiness of his committee to assist the party in bringing aggrieved candidates under the shade of the umbrella, describing the party’s emblem as “big enough to accommodate everyone.”
Members of the Post-Convention Committee at the briefing included former Minister of State for the Federal Capital Territory, Oloye Jumoke Akinjide, former Minister of Environment, John Odey, National Publicity Secretary, Kola Ologbodiyan, Senator Joy Emodi and Ambassador Aminu Wali, among others.
Meanwhile, Secondus has restated his commitment to full reconciliation and inclusion of all aggrieved members in his efforts to reposition the party.
In a statement by his media aide, Bisi Ezekiel, the chairman made the assertion yesterday when he received Governor Dickson at the party headquarters.
Governor Dickson, also, last night met with Prof. Tunde Adeniran, one of the national chairmanship candidates who in the spirit of reconciliation asked the team to reach out to all those who felt aggrieved for one reason or the other.
The Special Adviser (Media Relations) to Governor Dickson, Mr. Fidelis Soriwei, quoted Adeniran as having made the comment while playing host to the committee on Tuesday night.
Adeniran argued that it was important to also reach out to as many members of the PDP who did not contest for any position but fought gallantly to ensure the survival of the party.
He said: “We should try to interact with various players; I will suggest that we should not leave any stone unturned to reach out as much as possible. ”