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NIGERIA: PDP Governors Renew Call for NEC Meeting

As the crisis rocking the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) continues to deepen, the governors supporting the Rivers State Governor, Chibuike Amaechi has called for the meeting of the National Executive Committee (NEC) of the party to discuss the crisis engulfing the party.

The governors also said they will not leave the party, no matter the level of provocation or frustration against them.

This is coming as the crisis rocking the Nigerian Governors’ Forum (NGF) has taken a new dimension as the factional chairman, Governor Jonah David Jang of Plateau State said the factional secretariat of the forum located at the Alvan Ikoku Street in Maitama District Abuja would be declared open by Vice President Namadi Mohammed Sambo by 4.p.m. tomorrow.

According to a PDP governor known to be one of the avid supporters of Amaechi, who spoke to journalists yesterday on the crisis rocking the party, said: “After our consultations over the crisis, including the suspension of Amaechi, some of us concerned agreed that the best way to handle this crisis is to summon the National Executive Committee (NEC) meeting of the party to address some of the crises in the party.

“The constitution of the party stipulates that the NEC should hold once every quarter, but the last NEC meeting of the party took place in July last year. So to us, there is the need for NEC to hold to address some of the issues and challenges confronting the party.
“The governor of Rivers State, Rotimi Amaechi has been suspended by the National Working Committee, some of the issues that the NEC would decide is whether or not the suspension is carried out according to the constitution of the party.

“This is because according to section 59 (3), it says ‘Notwithstanding any other provisions of this constitution relating to discipline, no executive committee at any level except the National Executive Committee shall entertain any question of discipline as may relate or concern a member of the National Executive Committee; president, vice president, governors, deputy governors, ministers, Ambassadors, Special advisers or members of any legislative houses

“We cannot allow issues to get out of hand, we are calling for the NEC meeting before things are out of control”, the governor told newsmen.

On the rumour that some of the governors perceived to be supporting Amaechi were planning a mass exit from the party to protest the ill-treatment given to Amaechi, the governor from the North-west geo-political zone said: “Much as we see what is happening as act of provocation, there is no need quitting the party. When the chairman of the PDP Board of Trustees (BoT), Chief Tony Anenih, visited some of us, we made it clear that we are not leaving PDP”, asking, “do you leave a house you built. What is happening in the PDP is family affair.

“The umbrella is too big and we will sit down and resolve these crises. They are not insurmountable. Do you run away from your house, when there is any trouble?,”  the governor asked.

Meanwhile, the crisis rocking the NGF worsened as Jang is said to have concluded plans to open a new secretariat by Thursday.

In furtherance of the communiqué of the meeting held by the pro-Jang governors on Saturday at the Benue State governor’s lodge, Jang’s group said that the forum resolved to secure a befitting permanent secretariat outside of any Governor’s Lodge.

It was as a result that the newly appointed Sole Administrator of the Jang’s group, Osaro Onaiwo told THISDAY that an office accommodation has been secured at the Alvan Ikoku Street Maitama.

He said the new office would be declared open by the Sambo at 4 p.m tomorrow. According to Onaiwo, “all party chairmen that have governors in the NGF would be invited, including the Rivers State governor and the chairman of PDP in the state”.
Onaiwo also said the leadership of the National Assembly would be invited to witness the opening ceremony.

Meanwhile, Jang, has apologised to Nigerians for some of the issues raised by the forum’s last election, assuring them that the forum would work on a structure for choosing its leadership without any rancour, and that it will be guided by the original constitution of the forum which does not provide for a second tenure.

Jang stated this yesterday, when he received the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) National Vice-Chairman, North-central zone, Yusuf Ayitogo, who led his executive council on a solidarity visit to him over his election as chairman of the NGF.

Stressing that under his leadership, corrections would be made while efforts would be intensified in the reconciliation process, Jang restated the commitment of the governors to cooperate with President Goodluck Jonathan for the development and growth of the country’s democracy.

Ayitogo, while affirming his executive’s belief in the capacity and ability of Jang to stir the NGF towards realising its aim in Nigeria, appreciated the governors for the confidence reposed in Jang, saying it was a victory to the North-central zone and the northern part of the country.

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