THE National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Senator Ali Modu Sheriff on Thursday accused the duo of Governors Nyeson Wike and Ayodele Fayose off Rivers and Ekiti States of recruiting former President Goodluck Jonathan into a fake peace meeting with an intention to discredit the Governor Seriake Dickson’s reconciliation efforts despite the fact that the report favoured their faction.
Sheriff who spoke through his Deputy, Dr Cairo Ojoughoh at a news briefing in Abuja alleged that Governor Wike spent a whooping sum of N50million to host the last botched meeting lured the former President
The PDP stakeholders’ meeting held last week in Abuja, which was initiated by Dr Jonathan, ran into trouble waters as Senator Sheriff and other members of his executive stormed out of the meeting, saying that he (Sheriff) was not recognized as the national chairman of the party.
The meeting took place at the Yar’Adua centre and was attended by several chieftains of the PDP including Governors, Chairman and members of its Board of Trustees and other leaders.
He insisted that the immediate past President was lured into committing a serious breach of protocol that led to the failure of the exercise which was the intended outcome.
However, in a swift reaction, Dr Jonathan dismissed the claim, saying that everything he did was done in the interest of the party, on which platform he became the President of the country.
The former President, who spoke through his Media Aide, Mr Ikechukwu Eze, faulted the claim by the Sheriff’s camp, describing it as untrue.
According to the media Aide, “It is not true, the former president intervened in the crisis because of his genuine commitment to bring about peace in the party that made him president. I don’t think anybody will believe that he collected money from anybody to organise the meeting. It is out of his genuine concern to bring peace in the party.
“He has been meeting with members of the party. He met with Sheriff severally, he also met with Makarfi severally. He met with the governors. I don’t see any reason for anybody to say that Jonathan collected money from anybody to organise the stakeholders conference.
Also reacting to the allegation, Governor Fayose of Ekiti State, stated that there was no reason for any sane mind to continue to respond to Sheriff’s continuous display of political insanity.
The Ekiti State Governor, who spoke through his Media aide, Lere Olayinka in a telephone interview, said, “If Ali Modu Sheriff has taken his desperation to serve his pay masters in the APC to the level of accusing former President Jonathan of being bribed to organize a peace meeting for the PDP, there is no reason for any sane mind to continue to respond to the continuous advertisement of his political insanity.”
The Senator Sheriff-led PDP equally alleged that Governor Wike and the Chairman/Chief Executive of AIT/Ray Power Radio, Dr Raymond Dokpesi have established their own party, stressing that their actions are to tie the PDP down with controversies.
According to him, “It was a thing of joy for the party faithful as they jubilant end that indeed peace has returned to the party. But to the surprise of all, Governor Wike Governor Fayose recruited the former President Goodluck Jonathan into a fake peace effort predetermined to scuttle Governor Dickson’s efforts.
“The result is that President Jonathan was lured into committing a serious breach of protocol that led to the failure of the exercise which was the intended outcome.
“The party therefore has decided that Senator Ali Modu Sheriff should exercise the utmost power of Chairman of the power and announce a schedule for the convention.
“The party is worried that the amount of money Governor Wike is spending needlessly is worrisome and a measure of unbridled profligacy intended to further smear the good image of the party. This money belongs to the people of Rivers State and it should not be misappropriated at the expense of the people to whom it rightfully belongs. Anybody partaking in the misuse of Rivers State money should be fully aware that it is blood money. Therefore call on party leaders and Nigerians to refrain from accepting these monies from Governor Wike in line with the spirit of founding fathers.
Sheriff however said that the party would go ahead to organize a well coordinated free and fair National Convention in due course and directed all the States Chairmen of the party to submit to the office of the National Organizing Secretary of the party the list of all statutory delegates to the convention on or before the 27th of April 2017 ahead of the National Executive Council, NEC meeting of the party slated for 3rd of May, 2017.