Okowa, BoT step up efforts to resolve PDP crisis
The Vice Presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Ifeanyi Okowa, and the party’s Board of Trustees (BoT) have intensified efforts to resolve the crisis in the party.
The Senator Adolphus Wabara-led BoT, yesterday, in Abuja, met with Okowa behind closed doors. The meeting, held at Delta State Governor’s Lodge, Abuja, it was learnt, afforded the BoT and the party’s candidate an opportunity to speak frankly on the outstanding issues hindering genuine reconciliation.
Speaking to journalists shortly after the meeting, Acting Chairman of the BoT, Senator Adophus Wabara, said: “Yes, we came as the special reconciliation committee of the board of trustees to visit our vice presidential candidate, Okowa on the ongoing crisis, and to proffer solutions to the issues.
“We were properly briefed by the vice presidential candidate on the issues. The committee is enlightened now on the issues and we are moving forward. Like I said the last time, we have been going around and we met most of the governors.”
While speaking on the next step for the BoT, Wabara said: “In the coming days, we will also meet with the principal, the presidential candidate, former Vice President, Atiku Abubakar and from there, we will proceed to meet with Governor Nyesom Wike.
“We have met with some other governors. We have met governors Samuel Ortom, Seyi Makinde, Ahmadu Fintri, Ikpeazu and Ugwuanyi. We have what it takes to resolve this, and very soon we will resolve all these issues.”
In his remarks, Okowa said: “We are talking amongst ourselves as governors, realising that there are several leaders within our party from across the country. We’ve been talking with ourselves.
“I believe that there is still a little work to be done, but a lot has been done. We are largely reconciled. There are still issues to be dealt with. That’s why you see some of the leaders of the party, the Board of Trustees members, here today.
“We have had very useful discussions on what they could do and what we ought to continue to do as a party. But, because the PDP is a very large party, we understand that yet, there is some level of disagreement, but we will continue to stay in touch with ourselves to resolve the issues.
“Last Tuesday, we were in the southeast. Our brother, the governor of Enugu State hosted us very well. That is a very positive step forward. We had very useful interactions with all our leaders in the southeast and I think that is a great plus for us as a party.
“And I believe too that you’re aware that we were in the southwest where we were very well received by Governor Seyi Makinde and the stakeholders of the party.
“There are few issues still left on the table. I’m sure we’ll come to discuss it and in the next few days, we are convinced that we will be largely reconciled.
“Governors and other members who are aggrieved are members of the party. I believe that my brothers would all work for the party. PDP is home and they belong to that home. They’re not going to destroy their home.
“Where we are at the moment is quite a difficult situation for this country. The country has never been as divided as this. The level of insecurity has not been this bad.
“Our economy is worse hit and we have never gone this bad. When you look at the issues of education, look at the state of affairs in the various states, these are obvious issues. Atiku is the only one who is best positioned to truly deal with the issues of Nigeria at the moment.
“We don’t want those who are going to come to the office to learn on the job, because we are in a critical position. So, we need a man who has the experience, humility, calmness, and he is detribalised to keep Nigeria together.”
Those who attended the closed-door meeting include former Minister of Special Duties and Inter-governmental Affairs, Kabiru Tanimu Turaki; former Deputy National Chairman of the PDP, Alhaji Shuaibu Oyedokun, among others.