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Monday, 29 January 2018

OBJ’s letter: PDP happy, warms up for 2019

OBJ’s letter: PDP happy, warms up for 2019

…unites fractious groups

PDP never a credible alternative, says APC

Leading opposition party, the Peoples Democratic Party, appears upbeat at the moment, considering the various challenges facing the All Progressives Congress-led national administration.

Apart from harsh economic realities, especially the recurring fuel scarcity, and the Fulani herdsmen trouble that seems difficult for the government to overcome, former President Olusegun Obasanjo, last week, wrote a damning letter to President Muhammadu Buhari, telling the President that his administration had failed.

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Some political watchers are, as such, of the opinion that the current deficit in popularity, facing the ruling party, is now being capitalised upon by the PDP, which has set about reconciling aggrieved groups within the party, with a call on the APC to expect a hot contest at the 2019 presidential poll.

Recently, a faction of the party, Fresh Peoples Democratic Party, cancelled plans to inaugurate its parallel National Working Committee.

The development followed a truce that was reached at the residence of former National Chairman of the PDP, Dr. Okwesilieze Nwodo, in Abuja.

The members of the group, led by Chief Olukayode Akindele, also dissolved their group and pledged loyalty to the Prince Uche Secondus-led PDP, saying the party remained united.

Akindele, speaking at the end of the closed-door meeting, said they were collapsing into the main NWC of the party after receiving words of assurance from PDP leaders.

“We have received assurances from our leaders here that things will be addressed. While today marks the end of Fresh PDP, it brings a PDP that is caring and wants to address issues that may affect it in the primaries.

“This group has been cancelled. We have surrendered the list to our leaders here and we want to assure that this is the best thing that can happen to PDP,” Akindele assured.

Nwodo disclosed that no conditions were given before the dissolution of the Fresh PDP, which he described as being made up of enthusiastic youths needed by the party ahead of 2019.

He added that the conciliatory process enjoyed the backing of the national leadership of the party, as well as that of the Board of Trustees.


Nwodo also described the reconciliation of fractious groups within the party as the best gift the PDP could give Nigerians.

“A lot of people thought our house was divided and was about to cascade down. But we want to assure you that by God’s mercy and internal reconciliation capacity of the PDP, the cracks that you noticed have been completely sealed off,” he enthused.


Meanwhile, some Nigerians have begun to dissect the missive to the President by former President Obasanjo, with many expressing the belief that Obasanjo’s criticisms of the Buhari administration are bound to have damaging effect for the APC if it chooses to field Buhari in the next election.

Apparently worried over the state of the nation, Obasanjo, fondly called OBJ, advised President Buhari to quit office at the expiration of his tenure in 2019.

OBJ, while analysing the socio-political and economic situation of the country, said Buhari should not re-contest after this tenure expires because the country was stumbling from one problem to the other.

According to the former president, what made Nigerians vote Jonathan out of office three years ago is currently playing itself out under Buhari’s government.

“The situation that made Nigerians vote massively to get my brother Jonathan off the horse is playing itself out again. First, I thought I knew The Point where President Buhari is weak, and I spoke and wrote about it even before Nigerians voted for him, and I also did vote for him because at that time, it was a matter of ‘any option but Jonathan.’”

Obasanjo, who admitted it was too late for Buhari to come back on track, said he had earlier advised the President on the state of the nation, but that some people asked him to ignore the advice.

Reacting to OBJ’s letter, the chairman of PDP Governors Forum and Ekiti state governor, Mr. Ayodele Fayose, said the current situation in the country had already justified that Nigerians were tired of the APC, and were yearning for PDP’s return.

Speaking through his media aide, Mr. Lere Olayinka, Fayose said, “The current state of the nation is enough to tell all that Nigerians are tired of APC and are yearning for PDP. We have seen it all; Nigerians have tested the two parties and seen which one is better, and I can tell you that with what we have presently, the coming back of the PDP is certain.”

The Edo State chairman of the PDP, Chief Dan Orbih, in his reaction, said he was sure Nigerians would vote back PDP in 2019. Orbih, who spoke with our correspondent on phone, said Nigerians had realised that the PDP had the love and interest of Nigerians at heart than the APC.

He added, “APC’s report card has justified that they are not capable of piloting the affairs of the country. By God’s grace, PDP will come back in 2019. The situation in the country is enough to tell everyone that.

Look at the current state of things in the country. Nigeria that was the giant of Africa in all ramifications is now struggling with insecurity, unemployment, hunger, poor exchange rate and others.

“Let me tell you; APC itself has already helped us with a chance of coming back, and that will be confirmed when we come back in 2019.”


But in a swift response, the Chairman of the APC in Kogi State, Alhaji Haddy Ametuo, said the shortcomings of the party had not merited the coming back of PDP.

The ruling party’s chieftain, while speaking with our correspondent, said President Buhari’s government, though might not have the best result as anticipated by the citizens at the moment, all the same, “has massively surpassed the 16 years of PDP administration in the country.”

“PDP leaders must be clowns to have had a thought of coming back in 2019. Are they not the architects of the problems we are still trying to get rid of in the country? Their 16 years’ administration is nothing but a disaster.

“Of course, we know we are not yet there, but you cannot justify a claim to non-performance totally based on about three years we have spent. Imagine, a builder that wants to build a house that some people destroyed in 16 years; it will definitely take him time.

“Even with that, look at the Boko Haram issue, how we have reduced it; look at the economy of the country. We may not have achieved the best result, but our shortcomings have not called for their return. Moreover, who is the credible candidate PDP wants to present? Nigerians are wiser and I believe they will not want to opt for them again,” Ametuo responded.

READ ALSO :  Letter To Buhari: Group Attacks Obasanjo, Reveals How He Diverted Operation Feed The Nation, Other Public Assets For Personal Use


A public affairs analyst, Erasmus Ikhide, has, however, opined that both the PDP and the APC have failed to meet the needs of the public but remarked that the heat is now on the APC because it produced the government in power.

“Issues ranging from the recession, imbalance fight against corruption, fuel scarcity, economic problems, lopsided appointment, naira devaluation, Boko Haram menace, Fulani herdsmen killings and others are big issues that may make the common citizen pray for the end of this current regime in 2019,” Ikhide explained.

He, however, said it would be better for President Buhari to yield to Obasanjo’s advice and bow out of government in 2019 and nominate someone else to carry on, “in order to save his integrity.”

The analyst further said, “If the information reaching me now is anything to go by, that seven governors and 20 senators have supported OBJ’s call on Buhari not to go for another term, then Nigeria is bound to witness a radical paradigm shift in the political firmament.

“But the truth is that, The PDP’s 16 years of the locust will certainly hunt them unto the bargain, as OBJ himself remains one of the worst Presidents Nigeria ever had under the same PDP leadership.

“The same goes for the APC; a political party whose ‘change’ slogan has become a chain that manacled Nigerians, making hell seem like a paradise. The destruction of the economy via devaluation of naira was the last straw,” he criticised.

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