Co-Chairman of the group – the Concerned Peoples Democratic Party Stakeholders, Senator Ibrahim Mantu, stated this in Abuja, Saturday while reacting to the developments from a parallel national convention of the party held in Port Harcourt, Rivers State.
Delegates at that Port Harcourt convention had also dissolved the party’s NWC, the National Executive Committee (NEC), scrapped the zoning of national chairmanship to the North-East, among other resolutions.
The convention constituted a caretaker committee, headed by former governor of Kaduna State, Senator Ahmed Markafi to manage the party for 90 days and conduct a fresh national convention within the period.
However, Mantu told newsmen that the group rejected the caretaker committee, insisting that the only constitutional organ to run the affairs of the party in a situation as had arisen was the leadership of BoT.
“There is a body that is constitutionally mandated to take over the affairs of the party and that body is the conscience of the party called the Board of Trustees (BoT),” he said.
He said that the development at Port Harcourt was a clear vindication for the group’s demands and principles.
“We were opposed to the zoning and indeed the zoning has been cancelled or set aside.
“We were also opposed to the convention, and the convention did not take place courtesy of the court.
“Again, we were opposed to the way the congresses have been conducted, that, they fell short of our expectations. Now these congresses and conventions have been set aside.
“This group can confidently say that we have achieved all the targets we set to achieve,” Mantu stated.
Also speaking at the news conference, former Minister of National Planning, Mr Saminu Turaki, said that it was time the BOT stepped in and took charge of the party.
Turaki said that the PDP Constitution empowered the BoT as the conscience of the party to take over during situations as such as it was happening currently.
“There shouldn’t be any vacuum and we are concerned that what is coming out of the party from Port Harcourt may likely deepen our disagreement.
“In this situation, therefore, the BOT leadership must take up its responsibilities over the reign of the affairs of the party.
“They need to bring all the members of our party back home, for us to sit down and find a way forward as members of one family,” Turaki said.
Saying that the events at Port Harcourt had further factionalised the party, he said it was unfortunate that instead of working towards strengthening and bringing all members together, they ended up scattering it more.
“There is a group now behind Sheriff saying that everything that has been done is illegitimate and wrongful, while the other groups are saying that Sheriff has been dissolved.
“We don’t want to destroy this party; we want to strengthen the party and bring all members as it were as one family back home together. That is why we are worried.
“Instead of them coming to say that we were right, that they have agreed with our arguments, they ended up factionalising their own group.
“We are saying that this is a very serious situation we need to appraise before taking a decision,” he said.
Meanwhile, delegates to the Port Harcourt convention sacked its National Officers, dissolved the National Working Committee and set up a seven-man Caretaker Committee.
The motion to sack the national officers and dissolution of the NWC was moved by Mr Austin Opara, former Deputy Speaker, House of Representatives and seconded by Mr Emeka Ihedioha, also a former Deputy Speaker of the House.
Nyesom Wike, Rivers governor and Chairman of the party`s National Convention Committee, put a voice vote on the motion which was affirmed by the delegates.
The Convention also approved another motion to set aside decisions taken by the NWC and zoning of its presidential candidate for 2019 election to the north.
The motion was moved by Dr Babangida Aliyu, former governor of Niger State and seconded by Dr Ifeanyi Okowa, Delta State governor.
The convention also set up a seven-man Caretaker Committee headed by Sen. Ahmed Makarfi, former Kaduna State governor while Sen. Obi was made its Secretary.
The Committee was given three months to organise a new National Convention to elect new national officers.
The delegates also barred the Committee members from contesting any position in the next convention.
In his speech, Makarfi said he accepted to serve because it was about the unity of the party and progress of the country.
“I humbly accept this challenge and I do so on behalf of other members of the committee. Other members of the committee were nominated on trust,” he said.
Makarfi assured that the committee would serve and bring unity to the party.
“I assure you, you will have no cause to worry. None of us is seeking for any office. We are here to serve and bring unity to our party. I call on all aggrieved party men and women, to give us a chance to rebuild our party to give hope to Nigeria and black race,” he said.
Other members of the Committee are Sen. Odion Ugbesie, Sen.Abdul Ningi, Mr Kabir Usman, Mr Dayo Adeyeye and Alhaja Aisha Aliyu.