17 July 2017

Nigeria: Dickson Asks Sheriff to Support Makarfi

Following the Supreme Court judgment on the leadership crisis rocking the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), the Governor of Bayelsa State, Hon. Henry Seriake Dickson, has called on the former National Chairman of the party, Senator Ali Modu Sheriff, and his supporters to team up with the Senator Ahmed Makarfi -led National Caretaker Committee (NNC) of the party to move PDP forward.

The governor who is also the Chairman of the National Reconciliation Committee of the PDP, said the apex court judgment produced no victor, no vanquished; and called on the contending forces to see it as such.

To this end, Dickson advised the Senator Makarfi-led NNC and all leaders of the party to deliberately and "consistently pursue true and genuine reconciliation of all contending parties in the party with the view to organising an all-inclusive national unity convention to select the national leadership of PDP."

According to a statement signed at the weekend in Yenagoa by the governor's Special Adviser on Media Relations, Francis Agbo, Dickson said he believes true reconciliation and a national unity convention would build confidence in the party as well as "endear Nigerians to PDP and persuade those who had defected from our great party to return to PDP ahead of 2019."

While stressing that the judiciary only adjudicates on matters but never reconciles contending parties, the governor said now that the Supreme Court has delivered the much expected judgment, the PDP must now reconcile and truly put its house in order to effectively play its role as the leading opposition party in Nigeria.

Dickson enjoined all PDP faithful and leaders to respect the judgment of the Supreme Court as the final arbiter by cooperating with the NNC to deliver reconciliation and an acceptable unity national convention within the shortest possible time frame.

The statement read in part: "I call on Sheriff and his supporters and all contending parties in our great party, PDP, to respect the verdict of the Supreme Court as the final arbiter. I urge all contending parties in the PDP to embrace peace and genuine reconciliation and support the Senator Ahmed Makarfi-led Caretaker Committee of our party with a view to organising an all- inclusive national unity convention. Without such support, genuine reconciliation cannot take place; without such support, the caretaker committee will have a herculean task organising an acceptable convention, without genuine reconciliation, the party cannot move forward."

Dickson noted that the prolonged PDP leadership crisis was unnecessary in the first place, and believed that the PDP leaders had learnt their lessons, hoping that the PDP leadership would put in place measures to forestall re-occurrence of the needles crisis and litigations!

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