PDP: Have Things Fallen Apart?

Bamanga Tukur

PDP National Chairman, Bamanga Tukur

I saw it coming. I wonder why President Jonathan or his augurers did not see it either. The plot was thickening on hourly basis as the mini convention of the ruling party neared. From the “five flying Governors” who traversed the country like a troubadour consulting people of fellow views, to the array of arrows pointing towards the President’s perceived 2015 ambition, the sky was clear for anyone without even an Ouija board to see that the party has entered turbulent weather.

The factionalisation of the People Democratic Party (PDP) last week couldn’t have come as happenstance to any keen observer of our political terrain. Things began to fall apart right from the day Jonathan took over the party leadership and eased out the former National Chairman Baraje and his secretary Olagunsoye Oyinlola. Such political permutations left no one in doubt of his ambition as it was calculated to mean he was clearing the ground to take hold of the party machinery ahead of 2015. But it was a wrong political move, especially coming at a time the North was still licking its wounds over the loss of the presidency.

But can Jonathan mend this deep crack within the party? Can he navigate it to a safe shore with Alhaji Bamanga Tukur on board? The truth is that the New PDP (which is the name of the faction comprising seven or more governors led by Alhaji Atiku) means business. For there to be peace in the party the faction is out to extract many concessions from the president, one of which is that he must sack Tukur and drop his presidential ambition for 2015. This will be like putting Jonathan between the devil and the deep blue sea. And to heed to them requires much sacrifice on the part of the president.

The New PDP is out to foul the air for Mr. President. Even if they eventually settle the rift the crack will still be there, and that will mean having a party within a party, and that will not be in the interest of Jonathan.

PDP should not divide, especially when it still has 50 more years according to its handlers to rule Nigeria. No country goes to war with a factionalized and divided army. It should act quickly to put its house in order to save the country from any headache that will likely require swallowing APC.

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