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The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has apologised to former President Olusegun Obasanjo for ‘‘bad conduct and mistreatment,’’ Kehinde Akinyemi, Mr Obasanjo’s media aide, has said.
Mr Akinyemi made the disclosure in a statement issued today, Saturday, 14/7/2018.
He said the party’s national chairman, Uche Secondus, who led a 21-member delegation of the party’s National Working Committee (NWC) on a courtesy call on Mr Obasanjo, gave the apology.
Other issues raised by Mr Secondus, according to Mr Akinyemi, were the situation in the country, the progress of the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on the grand alliance of the Coalition of United Political Parties (CUPP).
He said the PDP national chairman also appealed with Mr Obasanjo to continue to proffer solutions to the nation’s socio-economic and political problems.
Mr Akinyemi said that Mr Obasanjo granted forgiveness to the party in line with the biblical injunction.
He said the former president urged them to pay attention to issues that were needed to restore PDP as a party of a good image, discipline, commitment, leadership and moral principles.
On CUPP being championed by PDP, he said Mr Obasanjo advised that the coalition should remain an alliance as being projected and not a merger.
‘‘The MoU for a grand alliance is what it says, a grand alliance. It is neither a merger nor absorption of any political party by any political party.
‘‘It is clear for the parties which agreed to be members of the alliance to work together to achieve one important common objective at the national level for the election of 2019.
‘‘Where it is appropriate and necessary, members may also form alliance and co-operation at the state level.
‘‘The individuality and independence of each political party must be observed and respected by all parties concerned.
‘‘It is also desirable that in the process of implementing the MoU to achieve the set objective, solidarity and focus on the objective must be maintained.
‘‘Each member political party must be cautious of fake news, rumours, blackmail, and seeds of discord that may be sown among them from external quarters,’’ Mr Akinyemi quoted Mr Obasanjo as saying.
He said the former president at the meeting reiterated that he had quit partisan politics, but would continue to make himself available to guide any party that so desired.
Mr Akinyemi, however, maintained that he would prioritise his service to the African Democratic Congress.
Mr Secondus, who spoke with journalists shortly after the meeting, said the chieftains of the party were in Abeokuta to consult with Mr Obasanjo ahead of the 2019 general elections.
He emphasised that the consultation had become necessary to seek direction from Mr Obasanjo and factor in his pieces of advice as PDP prepares for the 2019 general elections. (NAN)
READ FULL STATEMENT BY MR. OBASANJO BELOW.
(Media Release on Meeting between H.E Chief Olusegun Obasanjo and the National Working Committee of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP)
At the instance of the National Working Committee (NWC) of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Chief Olusegun Obasanjo received a twenty-one-man delegation of the Committee led by the National Chairman of the party, Uche Secondus, and the Chairman of the Board of Trustees, Walid Jibrin, who paid a courtesy call on the former President and had a breakfast working meeting with him at the Olusegun Obasanjo Presidential Library in Abeokuta.
The PDP National Chairman, speaking on behalf of the delegation and the party, made four key submissions (i) Apology to the former President for the bad conduct and mistreatment of him by the PDP (ii) The distress and prostrate situation of the country today (iii) The progress of the MOU on grand alliance of the Coalition of United Political Parties (CUPP) (iv) Appeal for the former President not to be tired with giving leadership to save the country from the throws of mismanagement and shipwreck.
In response, Chief Obasanjo thanked them for their visit and their briefing and urged them to pay attention to four issues that are needed to bring PDP back to a party of good image, discipline, commitment, leadership and moral principles.
In addition, Chief Obasanjo thanked them for apologising on behalf of the party and made reference to the Lord’s Prayer where we are taught to ask God for forgiveness and to grant forgiveness to others. He further underlined the pitiable situation of Nigeria today and the inexcusable killing and insecurity almost all over the country and the unprecedented division of the country all of which the present government seems to have no credible solution.
After deliberations, it was made clear that the MOU for grand alliance is what it says, a grand alliance. It is not a merger nor an absorption of any political party by any political party. It is clearly for the parties who agreed to be members of the alliance to work together to achieve one important common objective at the national level for the election of 2019 and where it is appropriate and necessary members may also form alliance and cooperation at the state level.
Chief Obasanjo reiterated to the Committee that the idea of a grand alliance was broached when the Coalition for Nigeria Movement (CNM) adopted African Democratic Congress (ADC) as a political party platform. He therefore reaffirmed his belief and support for the grand alliance.
Chief Obasanjo,however, advised that the individuality and independence of each political party must be observed and respected by all parties concerned. It is also desirable that in the process of implementing the MOU to achieve the set objective, solidarity and focus on the objective must be maintained.
Chief Obasanjo urged that all member political parties must be cautious of fake news, rumours, blackmail, and seeds of discord that may be sown among them from external quarters.
The former President reminded the committee that on adoption of ADC as political party of the CNM, he had maintained that he will not be a member of any political party but he will make himself available to guide any party that wishes to be so guided and he has offered such guidance to ADC. While he may make himself available to any other party that will require it, service to ADC will be paramount.
Chief Obasanjo pointed out to the committee that before their prompting he had put his hands on the ground and there is no looking back. He will join men and women in the country, and if necessary lead them, in retrieving and saving the country from shipwreck.