President Goodluck Jonathan may have directed the National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party, Dr. Bamanga Tukur, and other members of the PDP National Working Committee to resign.
It was learnt on Monday [Jun 17] that Jonathan gave the directive after the presidential committee on the PDP crises headed by the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Chief Pius Anyim, submitted its report to him in Abuja .
The order and submission of the report which noted that the party was drifting coincided with the lifting of the suspension of Sokoto State Governor, Aliyu Wamakko, by the 12-member Tukur-led NWC.
A member of the presidential committee, who spoke PUNCH’s correspondent on condition of anonymity, added that Tukur and the other NWC members would tender their resignation letters at the party’s National Executive Committee meeting scheduled for Thursday in Abuja.
He said apart from the PDP internal crises, the President was concerned about the position of the Independent National Electoral Commission on the manner majority of the NWC members came to office.
INEC had queried the affirmation method that returned most of the NWC members to office.
It was also gathered that the NWC members were told that they risked being sacked if they failed to quit before Thursday.
A PDP source said, “If they fail to resign before Thursday, they will be sacked.” He added that the Presidency had already directed that a caretaker committee be set up in place of the NWC.
When contacted, a member of the NWC, who wondered how Jonathan’s directive was leaked, merely said it was true.
“How did the story leak? Yes, it is true. I am already packing my things from my office, “he said.
But another NWC member, who also admitted that they would cease to hold office before Friday, said, “We are not resigning because President Jonathan asked us to do so. If we resign, it will be because of the report by INEC. We will be resigning to protect the integrity of INEC.”
A national leader of the PDP confirmed the looming dissolution of the NWC, saying, “You remember INEC had said that it does not recognise the election of a majority of them (NWC members).
A member of the presidential committee which has governors Emmanuel Uduaghan (Delta); Goodwill Akpabio, (Akwa Ibom); Theodore Orji (Abia ); Isa Yuguda (Bauchi); Ibrahim Shema (Katsina); and Gabriel Suswam (Benue), as some of its members, had said the panel was not pleased with happenings in the PDP.
He said, “Our report, which might not please the President and the leadership of the party, is that the party is drifting. We have told him not to allow the party disintegrate further because whether we like it or not, the party is drifting dangerously and we have to arrest that.
The Board of Trustees of the party is expected to meet in Abuja on Wednesday.
It was gathered on Monday that pressure from PDP governors made Tukur and his team to lift the suspension on Wamakko at a press conference jointly addressed by himself, Akpabio and four other governors–Uduaghan, Orji, Yuguda and Shema. Anyim and Gulak were also present at the briefing.
On why Amaechi’s suspension was not lifted, Akpabio said it was because of a case he (Amaechi) instituted against the party.