Ahmed Makarfi, chairman of the caretaker committee of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), has described the personal proposal of Seriake Dickson, Bayelsa state governor, to Ali Modu Sheriff as “ a mischievous act that does not mean well for the party”.
Speaking when he visited the secretariat of the correspondent chapel of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) in Kaduna, Makarfi said Dickson’s decision to pull out of the ?unanimous proposal drafted at a meeting of 11 PDP governors with former President Goodluck Jonathan, and to submit a personal one to Sheriff, was out of place.
“Just a week before Dickson submitted his report to Sheriff, the 11 PDP governors, met with former President Goodluck Jonathan and came out with a unanimous proposal on the way out of the crisis in the party,” he said.
“Then, out of the 11 PDP governors, he (Dickson) pulled out and made a proposal, which he presented to Modu Sheriff.
“Well, for us the issues in the PDP are not just about conducting convention, it is about more fundamental issues.”
He wondered how a convention could be held without addressing the issues destabilising the party and reconciling members.
“You have not talked about the problems, you have not sorted them and you are more concerned about a committee to organise convention, that means you will go and do convention while the crisis is still on,” he said.
“Governor Dickson was at the meeting of the governors and the former president where they came out with a unanimous proposal, so how can he pull himself out a week after and make his own proposal?
“If he had anything contrary to what they agreed on, why didn’t he suggest it at that meeting? He didn’t make sense. Out of 11 governors, you pulled yourself out and you made a separate proposal and presented to Modu Sheriff.”
He said if there was anything to change, they should have gone back to Jonathan and the other governors to discuss and review the responses from the caretaker committee, the BoT and from Sheriff and see if there would be any modification to the proposal and not for a governor who was a party to the unanimous proposal to come up with a personal proposal.
Makarfi said though Dickson spoke with him informally on the issue and promised that he was bringing his proposal, he never saw it.
He said Dickson “called the former president and they were to meet on Wednesday, then he also called BOT chairman, who gave him appointment for Wednesday, only for him to go and submit his proposal to Modu Sheriff to go ahead and conduct convention”.
“And that is what Sheriff has been looking for. Now he got somebody asking to go ahead and conduct convention,” he said.
“So what is Governor Dickson up to? I don’t know, but it is definitely an agenda not good for the PDP. His proposal is even a breach of the court of appeal judgement, because he is suggesting going for convention in June. The court of appeal said you cannot hold convention until August this year based on the tenure it recognised,” he said.
Makarfi also accused the Sheriff group of not complying with the court of appeal judgment saying that “he was still parading himself with party officials he single handedly appointed after May 21, 2016, when the court ordered that the status-quo before May 21 should be reverted to”.
He, however, added that the way out of the crisis was for all national officials to resign their positions, sign and indemnity not to contest such a resignation in court, then form a committee, consisting of members from the caretaker committee and Sheriff’s groups to organise a transparent convention, where there would be a level playing field for all the groups.