The secrecy surrounding the individual meetings between President Goodluck Jonathan and some G-7 governors in the last two weeks appears to have raised curiosity: it is suspected that the presidency has been working to break the ranks of the aggrieved governors and, by extension, the new PDP.
Before the last truce parley between President Jonathan and three of the G-7 governors, he held a separate meeting with the Kano State governor, Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso.
The president had earlier played host to the Niger State governor, Muazu Babangida Aliyu, a week before his meeting with the Kano governor at the presidential villa.
An impeccable source disclosed that the meetings have been generating suspicion in the ranks of the new PDP.
But the national publicity secretary of the new PDP, Eze Chukwuemeka Eze, has dismissed insinuations that President Jonathan's meetings with the governors were capable of infusing dissent among the new PDP leadership.
The factional deputy national chairman of the group, Sam Sam Jaja, affirmed that the new PDP was united.
The source said: "The fight for internal democracy that we waged against Tukur and the president is not a personal one; we all have our personal relationships with either Tukur or the president; but a situation where some people, because they have access to the villa, will go in to meet with the president and table their personal matters will only whittle down our fight.
"Today, you have seen that our operational office has been sealed up by the same people who say they are pursuing peace; this is happening because most of the governors have been discussing different and personal matters with the president each time they have audience with him.
"This is not to say that some of the governors are not committed to the fight but, from all indications, a few of them have been singing new tunes and we don't find it pleasant at all. For now, only two or three of the governors can be said to have stood resolute in defence of the initial code we set for ourselves. "
He further disclosed that the initial agreement before the August 31 walkout at the PDP national convention was that the new PDP would join the APC.
"Our initial plan was to join the APC so that we could join forces with other like minds to remove these anti-democratic forces from the corridors of power.
"We agreed to team up with the APC but later events and developments showed that some persons were not comfortable with the leadership of the APC; this, to some of us, was not good enough because the only way to achieve the aim of the struggle is to re-create a new Nigeria by voting out PDP, and the only way to do this would have been to decamp to the APC". But Eze blamed the Tukur-led PDP. "Those are the prayers of the Tukur PDP and they will fail; we are more united than before and the issue of the next platform option is not what could be rushed; we need to await the arrival of all our governors and other leaders who are currently on Hajj.
"As soon as they return, Nigerians will be given the opportunity to know our next line of thinking regarding what steps we would take," he said.
Also, Jaja said: "It is totally false that the G-7 governors and the new PDP are disunited; you should know that such mischievous speculations are not unexpected. But those who wish we had a crack shall be totally disappointed. "
Besides, the source within the Alhaji Kawu Baraje-led faction hinted that the position of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) regarding the refusal of recognition to the faction had created a situation of "indecision" in the group.
INEC had, last week, written to the new PDP that it was not inclined to withdrawing the recognition the commission had already given to the Alhaji Bamanga Tukur-led National Working Committee (NWC) of the PDP.
The development, the source said, had placed three options before the new PDP: joining the APC, abandoning the struggle midway, and joining the Peoples Democratic Movement (PDM). But he cited the last option as "too dangerous to gamble with".
New PDP speaks on INEC letter, sealing off of Adamawa lodge and Dikko-led disciplinary committee
The new PDP has, in the mean time, condemned the letter written to it by INEC. The group said in a statement signed by Eze that it was amazed that in spite of observed flaws in the August 31 national convention of the PDP, INEC went ahead to accord Tukur's PDP recognition. "To say the least, this decision by INEC to recognize Tukur's faction is unfortunate because INEC is aware of the flawed nature of the last convention where some of the aides of President Jonathan who are not our party's delegates were allowed to vote. This alone nullifies the outcome of that illegal convention.
On the sealing off of the Adamawa Governor's Lodge by the authorities of the Federal Capital Territory, Eze said the FCT lacked understanding of the status of a governor's lodge.
"The FCT minister not only demonstrates his lack of understanding about the status of a governor's lodge; what the minister has brazenly done is to indirectly attack the people and government of Adamawa State in his desperation to impress the PDP tin god, Alhaji Bamanga Tukur. On the setting up of the Umaru Dikko-led disciplinary committee by Tukur, the new PDP said it was amused by the development.
"The Alhaji Abubakar Kawu Baraje-led Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) is amused by the news of the setting up of a disciplinary committee by the faction of PDP led by Alhaji Bamanga Tukur. If, as reported in the media, the purpose of the said disciplinary committee led by Alhaji Umaru Dikko is to continue the witch-hunting of the progressive PDP members led by Alhaji Baraje, then there would be no need for further evidence that Tukur and his illegal National Working Committee (NWC) are indeed not ready for peace. Tukur inaugurates Kano caretaker committee
The Hassan Kafayos-led caretaker committee of the PDP was yesterday inaugurated. The committee will run the affairs of the party following the expiration of the state party's tenure.
Speaking during the inauguration proceedings held at the new party's secretariat along Court Road in Kano State, the chairman of the caretaker committee stated that his committee would ensure the prevalence of equity and justice in the party. He added that the caretaker committee would not condone any form of disrespect to the party's rules and regulations.
"I am here to see that the concept of justice and equity has prevailed in the Kano State PDP. I and the party secretary Malam Andrew Musa will ensure strict adherence to the rules and regulations governing the party's activities in Kano State. What we need is the cooperation of all stakeholders in the party to see that PDP in Kano State has regained its lost vigour, and I want to state here that the recent victory of the Manga-led PDP in INEC and in the court is vivid evidence that shows that PDP is intact. You are either with Bamanga chairmanship or you you are not in PDP," the caretaker chairman stated.
Earlier, a PDP elder in the state, Ambassador Aminu Wali, stated that the inauguration of the caretaker committee has clearly put an end to issues of whether the caretaker committee is realistic or not.
No Regrets Over Sealing Of Adamawa Lodge - FCTA
The Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) has said it has no regrets over last Saturday's sealing of the Adama Government Lodge.
Recall that the FCTA had sealed the building located in Maitama district of the territory, citing contravention of the land use for the area and violation of the Abuja Master Plan.
The administration in a statement yesterday, signed by Nosike Ogbuenyi, Special Adviser Media to the FCT Minister, Senator Bala Mohammed, while reacting to a statement attributed to the national publicity secretary of the new PDP, Eze Chukwuemeka Eze, maintained that it had no reason to apologise for its action.
The administration described Eze's comments as "diversionary since it failed woefully to address the issues at stake. Chief among the issues at stake is violation of land use purpose which cannot stand. The action by those persons behind the conversion remains illegal and abhorrent."
"The FCT is only interested in the rule of law and not political posturing and propaganda. However, the point must be stressed that no person or group of persons is above the law. Those who unlawfully and brazenly converted the Adamawa State Governor's Lodge, Maitama plot, a residential plot, to an office are the ones that should apologise to the people of the state not the FCTA or the Minister of FCT. What the FCTA is insisting on is compliance with land use purpose and nothing more. The FCTA therefore views the so-called ultimatum as empty and laughable. If Eze and his masters have any issue with the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), its Governors Forum or the Presidential Villa the minister's media said.