PDP caucus in Senate rejects Sheriff’s invitation
Senators under the umbrella of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) have rejected an invitation by the troubled National Chairman of the party, Ali Modu Sherrif.
Senate Minority Leader, Godswill Akpabio, told newsmen that the PDP caucus would instead support broad consultation to resolve the leadership crisis.
Akpabio spoke on Wednesday, March 8, 2017 that Mr. Sherrif invited the caucus on March 6.
He however said Sheriff’s invitation “will not be honoured because doing so means sectionalism.”
“We held this meeting because there was a letter from Sen. Ali Modu Sheriff to the caucus and we had to meet first to know whether this is the right time.
“Whether the meeting is right or not, what we agreed is that the leadership meets first and thereafter we meet with the Sheriff group, the Makarfi group and the BOT.
“When this happens, we will then see whether all can come to a consensus and not just the caucus running to the party office to meet Sen. Ali Modu Sheriff. That will look like sectionalism.
“As a caucus, we believe strongly in peace and we believe in the unity of the Peoples Democratic Party so that Nigeria can have a robust democracy.
“We believe that without the PDP being strong and united, Nigeria may slide into a one party state and democracy may be in peril.”
The former ruling party has been battling with internal crisis since Mr. Sheriff emerged chairman in a controversial convention.
The crisis degenerated to the level of court, and Sheriff was affirmed authentic chairman of the party in February by the Port Harcourt division of the Court of Appeal, defeating his rival Ahmed Makarfi.
The Makarfi faction rejected the judgment and had since headed to the Supreme Court for redress.
On why PDP senators are rejecting the invitation, Akpabio said plans were underway to meet with both factions and the Board of Trustees.
Akpabio who expresses optimism about out-of-court, said the plan of the PDP caucus “could even be a major way out, instead of continuous processes in court.”