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I won’t resign as PDP chairman –Tukur


 The National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party, Dr. Bamanga Tukur,  on Tuesday told those seeking his removal from office that his job was not vacant.

“Chairman is there dam! dam!  The chairman is not only in office, he is also in power. In PDP, there is no vacancy in the national chairmanship,”  he boasted to  State House correspondents after the party’s National Working Committee meeting with President

Ahead of the PDP National Executive Council meeting scheduled for Thursday, there had  been  reports that Tukur and other members of the NWC of the PDP had been directed by  Jonathan  to resign.

 Tukur told the  State House correspondents   that he would not resign as the national chairman of the party because “we are here to run the PDP.”

“It is not true that I am resigning. Resign for what? It is not true at all. We will continue to run the PDP,”  he added, but went ahead to  confirm that eight members of the NWC whose elections  were faulted by the Independent National Electoral Commission would  resign.

 He said himself, the National Financial Secretary, the National Auditor and the National Secretary whose office is already vacant were not affected.

 Those who will resign, according to Tukur, are all the deputies, and all ex-officio members.

He said, “The meeting with the President was about regularising the family of the PDP because there was INEC observation that some of the members of the NWC were  not properly elected;  so it has to be regularised.

“Those who have not been elected will resign and they will go back;  they will have the  opportunity to regularise.

“About eight people are affected. There are  people that are not affected, these are the National Chairman, the National Financial Secretary, National Auditor and of course the  National Secretary which is vacant now.

 “The other eight people, all the deputies, and ex-officials and the rest of them whose election in the convention was not voted for are affected.”

In preparing  for fresh elections for the affected party officials, Tukur said, “We are going to have party caucus tonight (Tuesday), we are going to have BOT tomorrow (Wednesday) and we are going to have our NEC on Thursday.”

Those who will resign  are  the National Publicity Secretary,   Olisa Metuh; Deputy National Chairman, Sam Jaja; National Organising Secretary, Abubakar Mustapha; Deputy National Organising Secretary, Okechukwu Nnadozie; Deputy National Publicity Secretary, Binta Goje; National Youth Leader, Garba Chiza; Deputy Youth Leader, Dennis Alonge Niyi; Deputy National Auditor, Umar Ibrahim; National Women Leader, Kema Chikwe; Deputy National Women Leader, Hannatu Ulam; Deputy National Treasurer, Claudus Inengas; and National Legal Adviser, Victor Gwom.

A member of the NWC, who pleaded anonymity, said, “The governors and other leaders of the party that are against us are insisting that  all of us  must go. If he (Tukur) does not resign, they will boot him out on Thursday.”

Investigations   showed that the governors, led by the Chairman of the PDP Governors’ Forum, Godswill Akpabio, had already commenced their “assignment.”

Tukur was said to have  told the  “friendly” governors that his removal would open the party to those he allegedly referred to as “anti-Jonathan forces.”  He was also said to have argued that if he was eventually humiliated out of office, it would be difficult for  the President   to get a replacement who would be loyal to him.

Apart from this, he  allegedly argued that since INEC  did not query his election, he should not be asked to leave with those whose elections were faulted by the electoral body.

His reason to keep his job also includes Ramandan, which he said might commence anytime from the middle of July.

If this happens, he reasons that it might be difficult to hold the party’s mid-term convention where new officers  are to be elected.

 Another issue raised by him with the Akpabio-led lobby group was that the constitution of the party does not recognize a caretaker committee.

Already, Akpabio met with some members of NEC in Abuja on Tuesday, where he allegedly  persuaded them to support Tukur’s stay.

The meeting, which was held with a group called G.84 and  statutory members of NEC, was called at Tukur’s  instance.

When contacted, the Special Assistant to Tukur,  Oliver Okpala, declined to speak on the issue.

But the  Deputy President of the Senate, Ike Ekweremadu,   said leaders of the PDP  were  still consulting over the fate of  Tukur and other party executives whose jobs were on the line.

Ekweremadu spoke with State House correspondents after a meeting  Jonathan had with the leadership of the National Assembly on the crises in the party.

He said though the meeting was a routine one, it dealt specifically with  the party’s issues since the leaders were all members of the party.

“We are still consulting on the matter (resignation of party executives) in the evening (Tuesday), we are going to have a meeting of the national caucus of the party and look at all the options available to the party. This is part of the consultation so that by tomorrow (Wednesday) or later this evening (Tuesday), we will have a position of the PDP on this issue,” he said.

President of the Senate, David Mark; Speaker of the House of Representatives, Aminu Tambuwwal; and some other leaders of the National Assembly were absent at the meeting.

Asked if the  National Assembly which is dominated by the PDP  was  not worried  by  the   crises, he replied, “every family has their own issues, the PDP is not an exception.”

Also reacting to Tukur’s travails, a former National Vice-Chairman (North-West) of the PDP, Senator Danladi Sankara, said Tukur needed to go for sanity to return to the party.

“Our party is bigger than Bamanga Tukur. His tenure as national Chairman has been nothing but disaster for the party,” 

He explained that Tukur and members of his team had dragged the party’s reputation to its lowest ebb.

Meanwhile, the  Wadata Plaza  headquarters of the PDP in Abuja  has been in total darkness because of the inability of the party’s leadership to pay its bill.

A member of staff   said the party owes  supplier of diesel  about  N9.6m, which he said was accumulated in the last six months.

“We are owing the supplier the sum of N9.6m for the past six months and the supplier said there would be no more supply if we refuse to pay,” he added.


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