National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Senator Ali Modu Sheriff and chairman of the party’s National Caretaker Committee, Senator Ahmed Makarfi have disagreed on the proposal that they should relinquish their positions as part of a political solution to the party’s crisis.
While Sheriff said he would remain as national Chairman until a convention is held, Makarfi said he will step down if the various organs of the party want him to.
The proposal that the duo should step down from their positions was taken at a meeting former President Goodluck Jonathan had with PDP Governors’ Forum on Tuesday.
Sheriff, who spoke through his deputy, Dr. Cairo Ojougboh yesterday said their position is that the PDP chairman will remain in office and conduct a convention, before he leaves office. He said if the two contestants to the chairmanship position step down, it will mean setting up another caretaker committee which will spark off another round of crisis in the party.
“If you say Sheriff and Makarfi should step down and you appoint another person, that will mean setting up another caretaker committee and the problem will start afresh. I’m telling you, our position, which is the position of the law, is that Sheriff will remain chairman and hold a convention. If you say Sheriff and Makarfi should go, who will chair the convention?” he asked.
However, Makarfi said the caretaker committee, which he heads, is a product of the various organs of the PDP.
“The proposal is much larger than Sheriff and myself, and it came as a result of meeting with our governors. Therefore, it’s erroneous to call it Jonathan’s proposal. It also did not call for halting the appeal except a common ground is found. The caretaker committee is a product of organs of the party. Therefore, it has no personal agenda. Whatever the organs of the party accept we will be bound by it,” Makarfi said.
On his part, former minister of Transport, Chief Ebenezer Babatope said if the proposal is what would bring peace to the party, Makarfi will step down.
Meanwhile, the PDP Reconciliation Committee has said a political solution is the best way to end the crisis in the party.
A statement jointly signed by Bayelsa State Governor, Seriake Dickson, Senator Ibrahim Mantu and Senator Joshua Lidani, chairman, deputy chairman and secretary of the committee, respectively, said the committee endorsed the resolution of the meeting between Jonathan and PDP Governors’ Forum, without prejudice to the ongoing litigation; that “a political solution is the best option for the protracted crises in the party.”