President Muhammadu Buhari has called the bluff of the leadership of new Peoples Democratic Party (nPDP) faction of the All Progressives Congress (APC).
The bloc was instrumental to APC’s dislodgement of the PDP from federal power in 2015, as the faction, led by six PDP governors, pulled out of the then ruling party to fuse with the APC.
Now disgruntled in the APC, the nPDP is asking for a meeting with the President. However, it appears their wish would not be granted, as a presidential source has told reporters that the President recently admitted to APC governors that has no plans to honour such meeting.
“The President told the governors as well as national leaders of the party pointedly to resolve the issues,” the source said, quoting the President as adding: “It is a party matter. I am not ready to sit down with any faction. If they have problems, they should go to the party. I will not interfere.”
According to the source, Buhari had also said: “Governors as party leaders in the states should deal with all issues. Where there is need, the party leadership can come in. I will not get involved.”
The President was said to have expressed happiness with the meeting betweent nPDP and Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo, and gave his nod for the discussions to continue.
The source explained that not all the governors in attendance supported the President’s stance.
“Some hardline governors asked the President to ignore the nPDP while the majority felt the party and the VP should continue to talk to them,” the source said.
The nPDP, led by Kawu Baraje, is country pulling out of the PDP, like it did in 2014; however, that will be determined by how the party handles its grievances.
After meeting with the National Working Committee of the party and with VP Osinbajo, a follow-up meeting was scheduled to hold with the VP. But the bloc withdrew from the meeting, citing the alleged use of state institutions to harass Senate President Bukola Saraki and Yakubu Dogara, Speaker of the House of Representatives, who are members of nPDP.
Baraje had kicked against the partial withdrawal of the security aides of the two leaders of the legislature, as well as the linking of Saraki to the Offa bank robbers by the Police.