The brick bats are still flying within the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) despite Wednesday’s verdict of the Supreme Court proclaiming Senator Ahmed Makarfi as the authentic National Chairman of the party.
Alhaji Ali Modu Sheriff who was sacked by the apex court rejected the ‘amnesty’ extended to him and his loyalists for the harm they caused the party in the last 14 months.
He said he did not need any amnesty from Makarfi and his group, and vehemently denied reports that he sent a congratulatory message to the PDP national chair over his victory at the Supreme Court.
Sheriff himself came under bashing yesterday from Governor Ayodele Fayose of Ekiti State who vowed that the ex-Borno governor would not go unpunished for his ‘crimes’ against the PDP.
The situation is not different in some of the state branches where officials of the two factions are not talking about the reconciliation which the Makarfi faction spoke about on Wednesday.
Sheriff took exception to the ‘amnesty’ declared for him and his supporters by Makarfi, labeling it reckless.
He said he committed no offence against the PDP to warrant anyone giving him amnesty.
He spoke though Mr. Bernard Mikko who,in a statement said:”Amnesty is a reprieve for those who have committed offence under our statutes. We did not occupy the office illegally or committed any offence. “Sen. Ali Modu Sheriff was validly elected and was forced to vacate the National Secretariat after a joint meeting of the contending camps with the Inspector General of Police in the wake of thuggish attacks in the heat of conflicting court pronouncements.
“However, the office was officially re-opened for us after we presented the certified true copy (CTC) of the judgement of Court of Appeal, Port Harcourt division to the Inspector General of Police.
“I am therefore concerned about the future of our party in the hands of some of those who are known to have pending criminal cases bordering fraud, treasury looting and dishonesty with the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).
“The Supreme Court of Nigeria is the highest court in our land and we await the copy of the full judgement delivered on July 12, 2017.
“No one owns the party and those making unguarded and reckless statements in the public domain should realize that the solution to the problem of Nigeria is beyond any political association. Unacceptable and unjustifiable means cannot lead to a justifiable and acceptable end”.
Mikko had earlier yesterday issued a first statement in which he denied that Sheriff sent a congratulatory message to Makarfi on his twitter handle @senatorsheriff.
He said it was mischievous for anyone to say that he congratulated Makarfi on twitter.
He said:”For the avoidance of doubt, Senator Ali Modu Sheriff does not have or own a twitter account and could not have tweeted any message.
“We therefore view the said message as fake and mischievous and should be discountenanced as that of evil doers.”
When contacted by The Nation on the phone about the group’s plan for reconciliation,Mikko said that would have to wait until they must have read the full judgement.
Efforts by our correspondent to get reaction from the spokesman of the PDP, Prince Dayo Adeyeye were not successful and he did not pick repeated calls to his mobile telephone line.
You won’t go scot free, Fayose tells Sheriff
Governor Ayodele Fayose of Ekiti on his return to Ado Ekiti from Abuja yesterday after the apex court’s ruling declared Sheriff and his supporters would not go unpunished for causing the party so much set back.
“The no victor, no vanquished that we said was a mere political slogan. Whoever that participated in this charade must show some reasonable level of remorse for their actions,” he said.
He described Sheriff and his group as impostors.
Fayose said he would have burnt his PDP membership card if the Supreme Court had ruled in favour of the other faction as “I never imagined myself being in the same party with impostors.”
He added:”I went to court with a bottle of perfume which I wanted to use to spray my cards and party flags and set them ablaze even within the court premises if Sheriff had won.That was why I went to court.
”Though, I believe that we remain the same PDP family but no one can cause our party such pains and embarrassment and expect that he would go without be asked to account for his actions.
The governor said with the PDP victory at the court, President Muhammadu Buhari would be defeated in the 2019 presidential poll.
On his own ambition,Fayose said: “Whether they like it or not, I shall be in the Villa in 2019, so my ambition is very much alive.”
Ekiti PDP Sheriff faction says no reconciliation talks yet
The Sheriff faction of the PDP in Ekiti State said it was yet to receive overtures for reconciliation from the Senator Ahmed Makarfi faction.
The Sheriff PDP faction in the state is chaired by Chief Williams Sunday Ajayi while the Makarfi faction which is loyal to Governor Ayo Fayose is led by Mr. Gboyega Oguntuase.
Both factions are still locked in a legal tussle at the Court of Appeal, Ado-Ekiti Division on which exco is the authentic after the Sheriff-backed faction had won at the Federal High Court.
The state Deputy Chairman of the Sheriff faction, Hon. Olasunkanmi Ogunbiyi, disclosed that the group would hold a meeting with its sponsor Senator Buruji Kashamu in Lagos tomorrow to decide the next line of action.
Ogunbiyi said the Fayose-backed faction had not made an overture to them but rather has been making what he called a “derogatory remark of amnesty” towards them.
He said: “We are going to meet with our principal (Kashamu) on Sunday and that is why where are going to take decision on our next line of action. We are going to decide whether to reconcile or otherwise.
“Those on the other side has not made any overture for reconciliation to us but they have been making derogatory remarks of amnesty towards us. I don’t want to say more than that until our meeting on Sunday.”
It’s all mum in Delta
The Delta State Chair of Sheriff faction, Mr. Ogbaburhon did not pick repeated calls to his line while
the his rival, Mr. Kingsley Esiso aslo declined comment on the issue, saying he was at a funeral.
He, however, promised to speak to the press when he returns from Abuja next week.
Deputy National Vice Chairman of the Sheriff faction, Dr Cairo Ojuogboh, who is from Delta State also declined to comment on the victory of the Senator Makarfi led PDP, saying the Ali Modu Sherrif led faction was awaiting the full judgment of the Supreme Court.
He said it is only after reading the judgement that the faction will decide on its next line of action.
When pressed on the next line of action, he declined to elaborate.
Ondo chair of Sheriff faction appeals for calm
The Ondo state chairman of the Sheriff camp, Prince Biyi Poroye urged their supporters to remain calm and wait for the directive of its leadership.
He was optimistic that the matter will be settled amicably.
He thanked all members of their group for their resilience, stressing that the Supreme Court judgement would help the party to forge ahead.