Patrick Osadebamwen, Abuja
Embattled Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Sen. Ali Modu Sheriff, took a swipe at members of the special reconciliatory committee who visited him Tuesday night to seek his input on the way forward over the crises rocking the party.
Sheriff, without mincing words, said “some of you here are part of the problem”.
He said that if elders of the party had not abdicated their responsibility, the party would have been on the path of steady sail to the admiration of all and sundry.
Sheriff said these while responding to the request by chairman of the special committee, Professor Jerry Gana, who said they had visited him to know from him the best way forward on the problem besetting the party.
Sheriff was flanked by his supporters, Sen. Hope Uzodinma, and former PDP South-South Vice Chairman, Dr. Cairo Ojougboh.
The Jerry Gana committee was inaugurated by the Board of Trustees chairman of the party, Sen. Walid Jibril on Monday as a special instrument to bring in the needed panacea to the leadership problem that followed the sacking of Sheriff at the Port Harcourt convention.
According to Sheriff “You see most of the problems that we are facing today, if our leaders had taken their responsibility firmly, we would never had problem but once a leader refuses to stand up to his responsibility, then, there is a problem. Why am I saying this? some of us here are part of the problem. This may not be for the public, but I am trying to put the record straight.
“We will allow the members of the press to go and we can talk to ourselves I will listen to you, then you will listen to me. I really wanted to listen to the BoT members. Then I will come up with what I think went wrong and what we can do. We all want a party that will be good and repositioned, then we will have to follow the rule of law and we must stop any impunity but the moment people want to use one impunity to correct the other impunity, it will not work.
“I want to put this on record, before we go into close door session. I never asked or wanted to be a National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party. I was sitting in my house, people came and begged me to put the party back together after the loss of election of 2015.
“Probably, the only person that may be in the know or has a glimpse of what happened is my bigger brother Sule Lamido because on the Friday that that happened, we were together; we came here and we were in the mosque together.
“We came back and the governor of Bayelsa state, Seriake Dickson, invited me to attend his ceremony in Bayelsa. I objected initially because I said I was not properly invited as the time was too short.
“The ceremony was coming up on Sunday of that week of the event. I want to put this on record because a lot of misinformation has been going around everywhere.
“I took the responsibility to put the party together. I did my best within the short time to do whatever I can”, he narrated.
Earlier in his remark, Professor Jerry Gana said they were on a reconciliatory mission to Sheriff and his group for an amicable resolution of the crises.
Gana: “We are here under the mandate of the party to listen to what the problems are so that we can find lasting solutions together.
“I do want to assure that we have a burden of historic responsibility because those of us who still have the privilege of being alive were among the founding fathers of the party
“Of the first eight of us, only about five us are still alive and about three of us are active, the rest of us are already either gone or weak
“Therefore, we feel a sense of historic responsibility that what they have started. Should not be allowed to die but alive so that we can pass it to generations yet unborn.
“I pray that we will be men and women of history. Who will leave a legacy of honour, legacy of integrity, legacy of good leadership, legacy of all that is good to the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
“We also feel that it is good that there is a solid need for us to understand one another. Wherever there is understanding there can be unity.
“Believe me, all it takes is to understand one another. And there is always an answer to the problems and the kind of thing that is happening to us.
“We are here on this day because we know that the beauty of peace will rest upon our party again.
“The way we were received here was very cordial, believe you me the Lord is already here, his presence will grant us wisdom, will grant us understanding that will allow us to flow with one another and all the problems will be resolved. We are here because we mean well, may God Help us”.
Some of those present at the meeting are former Governor of Jigawa state, Alhaji Sule Lamido, Dan Ibrahim, Hajiya Inna Ciroma amongst others.