Published On: Fri, May 19th, 2017

Ignore Makarfi’s antic, stay in PDP – Sheriff tells members

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*I never asked people to defect, Makarfi replies

By Ali Alkali

Sen. Ali Modu Sheriff-led Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has urged members of the party to ignore an advice for those of them desirous of contesting elections to look for alternative platforms.
Sheriff said this in a statement issued by Mr Bernard Mikko, the acting PDP Spokesperson to Sheriff, reiterating that Makarfi’s National Caretaker Committee is illegal.
It can be recalled that the National Caretaker Committee-led by Sen. Ahmed Makarfi was recently reported by a newspaper directing that states chapters of the party were free to decide on any political platform their candidates could contest while waiting for Supreme Court’s verdict on the leadership tussle.
Makarfi said that the call became necessary following the party’s experience in previous elections in Edo and Ondo where Sheriff fielded candidates against the party’s choice.
The statement by Mimiko said: “It is now clear that having failed to convince members to follow them to their proposed new party, Sen. Ahmed Makarfi and his co-travelers have resorted to using everything available to destroy our party. This new antic will also fail.
“We call on all loyal members to ignore this call and see them for what they are; destroyers of our much cherished party.
“We equally call on all members who are desirous of contesting elections to use the PDP and be rest assured of level playing field guaranteed by internal party democracy.”
The statement also assured all PDP aspirants that the end to impunity and imposition of candidates in the party was in sight.
On its part, the Makarfi-led National Caretaker Committee had denied a report that the committee directed PDP members to defect to other political parties.
The committee, in a separate statement issued by its National Publicity Secretary, Mr Dayo Adeyeye described the publication as misleading, saying the committee had never asked anyone to defect.
Adeyeye added that it was a deliberate attempt to misrepresent the committee’s position and cause confusion among the rank and file of PDP members.
He said that clarification became necessary following the confusion caused by a newspaper headline that the committee directed PDP members to vote for another party in the forthcoming local government elections in Lagos.
“There was no such directive from the National Caretaker Committee. Our statement was very clear and unambiguous, which was to the effect that we are in court and have absolute faith and confidence in the judiciary to dispense justice without fear or favour.
“We are aware that PDP is being disenfranchised in some elections and that different states have adopted different approaches to the issue without prejudice to the substantive matter before the court.
“We state categorically that the National Caretaker Committee has never asked anyone to defect to another Party. PDP is our party.’’
He enjoined PDP members to continue to demonstrate total commitment and loyalty to the party.

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