Former governors on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) yesterday lamented their relegation by their successors who saw them as threats and liabilities instead of assets to the party.
The governors who had come to that National Secretariat of the party on the instance of the national chairman of the party, Senator Ali Modu Sheriff, as part of his critical stakeholder’s consultation for the rebuilding of the PDP, commended the chairman for the move.
Speaking on behalf of the southwest former governor of Ogun state, Otumba Gbenga Daniel commended the initiative of the Chairman in bringing the former governors together especially at a time like this.
He pointed out that the same block of governors that the party struggled to checkmate became available asset of the opposition that converted their worth to electoral victory.
Sheriff told the former governors that he knew their worth and values to the party as former governors and would work with them and all other critical stakeholders in the bid to make the party stage a comeback and reclaim its lost glory.
His words: “as a former governor, I know what a governor goes through to win elections. You are the leaders of the party. Current governor are also leaders too.”
He added “former governors must be carried along. They must be involved in all affairs of the party so that we can get it right.”
He said if PDP must return to what it was in 1999 where it dominated the political scene “we have to go back to the drawing board.”
“We have to build the PDP to the level of 1999 when the party formed government; all stakeholders must be involved in the affairs of the party.”
Earlier in his submission on the plight of the former governors in the hands of their successor, former governor of Ebonyi State, Sen. Sam Egwu, who spoke on behalf of the former South-East governors and deputies, commended the PDP chairman for the initiative to reach out to this formidable reserves of her ranks.
He added that “this meeting has shown that the party has not forgotten those that started the party. Most of us were in the meeting that started PDP.
“But the convention in Nigeria is that the moment you are out you are forgotten. They stopped inviting us for meetings that we started. Former governors that we helped put in office forgot us. It was like frustration for most of us. But because we believed in the party we stayed back.”
While speaking on the behalf of the former governors of the North-Central states, former governor of Niger State, Abdulkadir Kure said: “We think our efforts are not being recognised. But some persons will tell us they are group 34. I believe that the group 26, the first PDP governors were not being liked by their people.”
He recalled that barely three years ago, a meeting like this “we hardly find a seat to sit.”
“Power belongs to almighty God. If you are arrogant, He will take it and give it to others. Somebody said we will rule for 60 years but God said okay just leave at 16. But if we are patient and plan we can get it back.”
He however charged Sheriff and the National Working Committee (NWC) of the party to “fear God, plan well, don’t have any motive but plan for the good of the party. If you do that Allah will grant you success.”
He also frowned at the manipulation of the G84, which comprises major stakeholders of the party.
Speaking on behalf of the North-West, former governor of Kano State, Ibrahim Shekarau, described the meeting as a “source of encouragement and inspiration to us who have held offices.”
He said “anyone who has been elected, not an appointee is a clear indication that he has some weight behind him.
“You must have established a wide range of relationship in communities, in the state and beyond. You cannot quantify the volume of experience of somebody who has occupied the office as governor. A very major sector of the party to involve governors and deputy governors who have some level of influence in their states.”
PDP Ex-Governors Lament Relegation By Successors