18 May 2017

Nigeria: Sheriff, Makarfi Trade Words Over Alleged Defection Order

Abuja — The two warring camps in the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) have renewed their animosity. The current face-off followed an alleged directive by the Ahmed Makarfi-led caretaker committee asking members to defect to parties of their choices in furtherance of their political ambitions.

While the faction outrightly refuted the claim, the party's National Working Committee (NWC), led by Senator Ali Modu Sheriff, insisted that regardless of its stance, the Makarfi group remains an illegal body.

In a statement yesterday on behalf of the caretaker committee in Abuja, Prince Dayo Adeyeye described as misleading a publication in a national daily wherein Makarfi was quoted to have directed party faithful to decamp to the Advanced Peoples Democratic Alliance (APDA).

He described the story as a misrepresentation of what the group meant in the statement it issued on Tuesday. His words: The headline is to say the least misleading and a deliberate attempt to misrepresent our position and cause confusion among the rank and file of our party members. "As any discerning reader of the newspaper would note, the headline is completely different from the content of the story."

"This statement became necessary because of the confusion caused by the newspaper headline and the wild rumours and misrepresentation circulating in the media that we directed PDP members in Lagos to vote for APDA in the forthcoming local government elections."

But Sheriff, in a statement issued yesterday by the spokesman of the NWC, Bernard Mikko, accused the faction of attempting to decimate the party. He insisted that the alleged defection directive was a demonstration of the frustration of the group, which according to him, is being deserted by party members. Sheriff, therefore, called on PDP stalwarts to have faith in his leadership, pledging a level playing field for all.

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