The protracted leadership crisis rocking the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) boiled over on Thursday as the Chairman of the party’s Caretaker Committee, Senator Ahmed Makarfi, vowed to “flush out” the court-backed party chairman, Ali Modu Sheriff, from the party.
But Sheriff has insisted that he meant well for the PDP and had agreed in totality with all the recommendations contained in Bayelsa State Governor, Seriake Dickson-led reconciliation committee for a national convention tentatively fixed for June 30.
The two factions made their positions known at separate media briefings in Abuja on Thursday.
The Spokesman of the Makarfi camp, Prince Dayo Adeyeye, who spoke on behalf of the group, said it would be a disaster for the party to allow Sheriff preside over the planned convention.
Describing Sheriff as “a snake under the party’s roof,” Adeyeye said the caretaker committee, in agreement with all organs and stakeholders in PDP, would deploy every available legal means to ensure that Sheriff is chased out of the party.
Asking Sheriff to stop parading himself as the chairman of the party, the Makarfi camp pointed out that the spirit and letter of the February 17 judgment of the Port Harcourt Division of the Court of Appeal did not confer the chairman on the ex- Borno Governor.
He said, “To buttress this, the general public will also recall that the judgment of the Appeal Court, Port Harcourt Division of Friday, February 17, 2017 that nullified the national convention of May 21, 2016 limited itself solely to the legality or otherwise of the National Convention of May 21, 2016 and not on the legality or otherwise of the appointment of Senator Ali Modu Sheriff as the Acting National Chairman of the PDP.
“Firstly, let us remind the public of our earlier calls on Senator Ali Modu Sheriff to stop parading himself as Acting National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) following the judgement of an Abuja High Court delivered by Justice Valentine Ashi on June 29, 2016 in which the court nullified the 2014 Amendment to the PDP Constitution that produced Senator Sheriff as Acting National Chairman of the PDP.
“This Judgment was never appealed by Senator Sheriff and the time frame stipulated by law for the appeal has elapsed; and as such, the judgment subsists.
“Another judgment delivered on August 17, 2016 by Justice Nwamaka Ogbonnaya of the FCT High Court in Abuja re-affirmed the ‘sack’ of Senator Ali Modu Sheriff as the Chairman of the PDP on the ground that the judgment of Justice Valentine Ashi which nullified his appointment has not been set aside or vacated and therefore it’s subsisting.
“Justice Ogbonnaya further held that all actions taken by Senator Ali Modu Sheriff are null, void and of no effect; and the order further restrained him from parading himself as the Acting National Chairman of the Party.”