Governors Nyesom Wike of Rivers Sate and Ayo Fayose of Ekiti State ended their vociferous support for Senator Ali Modu Sheriff as acting National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) on a rather sour note yesterday. The duo almost came to blows after it became clear that they were riding a lame donkey. While Wike remained steadfast in his support for the retention of Sheriff as Chairman of the party at its convention in Port Harcourt, Fayose sensationally backed out.
And thus ended the controversial three month tenure of the former Borno State Governor in the saddle. But Sheriff insisted that he remained Chairman. The convention itself was aborted and a former Governor of Kaduna State, Senator Ahmed Makarfi was picked to replace Sheriff in a desperate move to save the party from being submerged by the leadership crisis. Makarfi heads a seven-man committee to steer the affairs of the party. To assist Makarfi as National Secretary is a former aide to ex-President Goodluck Jonathan, Senator Ben Obi.
Other members of the committee are: Sen. Odion Ugbesie, Sen. Abdul Ningi, Mr. Kabir Usman, Mr. Dayo Adeyeye and Alhaja Aisha Aliyu. The Makarfi-led Caretaker Committee will pilot the affairs of the party for three months during which it is expected to elect the national working committee, it was gathered. The new chairman and secretary emerged shortly after Sheriff announced the suspension of the convention, citing three court orders.
The motion to dissolve the party’s NEC and NWC was moved by Mr. Austin Opara, a former Deputy Speaker, House of Representatives and seconded by Mr. Emeka Ihedioha, also a former Deputy Speaker of the House. Gov. Nyesom Wike of Rivers and Chairman of the party‘s National Convention Committee put a the question and the motion was affirmed by the delegates. The convention also approved another motion to set aside decisions taken by the NWC and zoning of its presidential candidate for 2019 election to the North. The motion was moved by Dr. Babangida Aliyu, a former Governor of Niger and seconded by Gov. Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta.