Monday, October 14, 2013

PDP CRISIS: Seal Aso Rock, Akwa Ibom Lodge Now - Rebels

The Kawu Baraje faction of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, has demanded the immediate sealing of the Presidential Villa, Akwa Ibom State Governor’s Lodge, Legacy House (PDP Secretariat Annex) and other venues where political meetings allegedly holds, if the action of the Federal Capital Territory Administration, FCTA, on the Adamawa Governor’s Lodge, was to be justified.
The National Publicity Secretary of the faction, which is also called the “New PDP”, Chukwuemeka Eze, who stated this in a telephone interview with PREMIUM TIMES on Sunday, argued that since President Goodluck Jonathan hold political meetings in the Presidential Villa, while the PDP Governors also meet in the Akwa Ibom Governor’s Lodge, both places should be sealed as, according to him, they belonged to the people.
Mr. Mohammed had on Saturday ordered the sealing of the Adamawa Governor’s Lodge, saying it had been turned to the secretariat of the PDP faction.
Denying that the New PDP had already turned the Lodge into its secretariat, Mr. Eze noted that Mr. Mohammed was desperately working to provoke the faction as well as Nigerians, adding that it would only halt its plan to take legal action on the matter if FCTA sealed the Presidential Villa, Akwa Ibom Governor’s Lodge, Legacy House (PDP Annex) and other places where political meetings were similarly held.
“If they are serious about what they are suggesting about the Adamawa Governor’s Lodge, they should go ahead and make sure they close Akwa Ibom Governor’s Lodge, Legacy House, and any other place political meetings are held,” he said.
“If they do so within 48 hours, we will not go to court. We have already instructed our lawyers to take legal action. We want them to apologise to the Adamawa people. These are extra conditions we are giving them.
“So, they should seal wherever they are doing political meetings, even the Aso Rock because it is for all Nigerians. Anything above that is not acceptable.
“Bala Mohammed is a political appointee, he should wait and see.”
However, Nosike Ogbuenyi, the Special Adviser to the FCT Minister, described Baraje faction’s demand as laughable because, according to him, the Presidential Villa, Akwa Ibom State Lodge had not been converted to party secretariat as the faction had done with the Adamawa Governor’s Lodge.
He also said the area where Legacy House was located was commercial and not residential.
“That is a different issue, villa is just one and nobody has converted it to a party secretariat. The Akwa Ibom Governor’s Lodge has not been turned to a party secretariat. So, it is a different issue,” Mr Ogbuenyi told PREMIUM TIMES in a telephone interview on Sunday.
On the Legacy House, where the ruling party conducts some of its ceremonies, the minister’s media aide insisted that it was not a residential area, but a commercial area and therefore there was nothing wrong in holding political meeting there.
“Do you have the title? It is not a residential area, it is commercial,” he said.
Mr. Ogbuenyi admonished the faction “to do the normal thing because they have contravened the rules. Anybody can come to your house to meet, but they have turned the Adamawa Lodge to party secretariat.”
Meanwhile, the National Publicity Secretary of the Afenifere Renewal Group, ARG, Yinka Odumakin, said although the decision of the FCT Ministry to seal the Adamawa State Governor’s Lodge, could not be divorced from the crisis in the PDP, the Adamawa State Government played into the hands of the ministry.
He insisted that there was no justifiable reason why a Governor’s Lodge should be turned to the secretariat of a party, whether it was a faction or not.
Also speaking, Osita Okechukwu, a stalwart of the opposition All Progressives Congress, APC, and spokesperson of the Conference of Nigeria Political Parties, CNPP, said although the ministry’s action was condemnable, members of the Baraje faction of PDP should quit the ruling party.
“Whereas one does not encourage the excesses on the side of the government, the New PDP should exit to any of the 25 parties,” he said.
“They were not born inside the PDP and PDP is not their father. They should not live on the hangover of the old one party, PDP where all elections were won by do or die affair. Let them exit and leave the shell for Bamanga Tukur.”
Source: Premium Times