By Adekunle Jimoh
The immediate past acting national chairman of the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Alhaji Abubakar Kawu Baraje, has said the party is in support of President Goodluck Jonathan’s stance on 2015 elections.
Baraje, who spoke with reporters on Sunday in Ilorin, the Kwara State capital, on wide range of issues, said he had not made any comment on that bearing in mind the dynamism of politics.
He said: “You will recall that up till the present time, PDP has not made a statement on whether the President will contest the 2015 elections or not. This is because the party realized the dynamism in politics. This does not mean that the PDP has accepted President Jonathan’s statement that he is contesting the 2015 elections, neither has it come out to say it is true he is not contesting.
“He now realized that his party has not called him openly or secretly or has supported him openly or secretly. The party just kept quiet and I think that has made him to keep quiet until very recently when the polity was heated up again.
“So in order to create a balanced relationship between him and Nigerians and a balance relationship between him and his party, he must react. And therefore, he asked people to react on his behalf that he doesn’t need any discussion about 2015 for now.
“I think we should leave that to the political parties to do their things secretly, not making it an issue. If we make it an issue, we are diverting attention while other people are dying. I think the stance of Mr. President on the issue is appropriate.
People should keep quiet and leave him to pay attention to the business of governance. When the time comes the door will be open and people will be let out to go and contest.”
On the chairmanship of the PDP Board of Trustees (BOT), the ex-PDP chair added that: “The constitution of the party does not prescribe where the chairman should come from, but the BOT can use its discretion for the purposes of balancing, to choose its chairman.
“Luckily, they have a secretary now. The secretary remains the highest office and he has a right. On the other hand three quarters of members of the trustees has the right to call the secretary to convene meeting. If a meeting of BOT is convened today, chairman of BOT will emerge, because if he doesn’t they are not obeying the party’s constitution and then the party can come in.
“It is PDP constitution for the BOT to appoint its own chairman. It is not a question for the party and the public. Whether the BOT members like it or not they must obey the clause of the party’s constitution which says appoint your own chairman among yourselves.”
On Boko Haram insurgency in parts of the country, Baraje said “the time has come for all of us to organize ourselves and be extra vigilant on the issue of security. Nigeria is already a very big target of attack. Therefore, the issue of being careless, carefree and ignorant should be removed. We should sit down with our family members and call ourselves to order.
“It is also important for leaders in Nigeria to come together in a very small group, not in a national conference and proffer solutions to government,” the PDP chief added.
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