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Ahead 2019, PDP preparing to welcome back nPDP, others from ‘fractured’ ruling APC

According to an African adage, ‘You do not involve pepper in any medication for eye condition.’

Granted this fact, indications are rife that recent happenstances around the peace process between the leadership of new Peoples Democratic Party (nPDP) block of the All Progressives Congress (APC) and the ruling party may have seen the “Arrow of god”, hence things “Are no longer at ease”.

Business Hilights Intelligence Unit (BHIU) on Tuesday gathered that follow up to the uneasy scenario, has encouraged some members of the nPDP block in the ruling APC to think returning to the trenches which may mean dumping the APC.

Though the government may have on Monday afternoon made a U-Turn by switching to allowing the Senate President, Bukola Saraki to just sent in his written statement over the April 5 robbery at four commercial banks in Offa, Kwara State, instead of the original invitation which was made via a public press briefing by the Police on Sunday.

In the understanding of the nPDP block, the continued persecution of their key members even in the face of peace process means irreconcilability of their differences.

In a statement, yesterday, leader of the aggrieved group, Alhaji Kawu Baraje, said the members were rethinking their earlier stand on making peace with the President Muhammadu Buhari-led administration.

Baraje, a dyed-in-the wool supporter of Saraki, referred to the allegation as a clear signal the presidency is not keen on reaching an amicable settlement with the group.

Observers say the Police changed their approach to the Saraki issue shortly after a closed-door meeting at the presidency between Vice President Yemi Osinbajo and critical service chiefs.

Just as there were plans by the entire National Assembly members including both chambers to shut down their plenaries and accompany Saraki to the police station before the sudden Police change in tactics, the Baraje statement averred thus: “The public may recall that there have been ongoing talks between members of the former nPDP, the APC and the presidency in recent days. Nigerians may further recall that a team from the former nPDP, led by Speaker of the House of Representatives, Hon. Yakubu Dogara, and four others, were to meet with Vice President Yemi Osinbajo today.

“However, while we are truly and earnestly committed to achieving reconciliation, harmony, truce and cohesion in the APC as we approach the 2019 general elections, it appears the presidency is not interested in the talks, and that they may have been negotiating in bad faith.”

The nPDP said it was alarmed that following its meeting with the vice president, last week, “The presidency misrepresented what transpired by trying to blackmail some of the principal actors involved in the discussions in a national daily. Similarly, the leadership of the party (APC) went ahead to ratify all the congresses from ward, local governments, states and zonal, where many of our members have complaints, effectively presenting us with a fait accompli.”

The statement further regretted the continued “persecution” of its members through the use of state security apparatuses. “We recognise the powers of the police to conduct criminal investigations. But by rushing to the public with the issue, even when they have unfettered access to the leadership of the National Assembly, suggests an attempt to undermine, make a caricature of and humiliate the institution of the legislature.”

nPDP added that “It appears there is a fouled and toxic atmosphere and environment of intimidation and threat to life where we now find ourselves. It may no longer be conducive to members of the former nPDP to continue with the talks, given the unfolding events in the last 24 hours, where the President of the Senate, Dr. Abubakar Bukola Saraki and Alhaji Abdulfatah Ahmed, the Governor of Kwara State, both of whom attended the meeting with the Vice President on Monday, May 28, 2018, have suddenly been accused of sponsoring armed robbery by the police under the directives of the presidency.

Already public affairs observers have started reviewing the scripts being played out.

According to the spokesman for Afenifere, Mr. Yinka Odumakin, “In the first place, the process of inviting Saraki was wrong and ill motivated. By virtue of the Senate President’s position, I think it was wrong of the police to have gone to the press with the invitation, as if the security agency had made up its mind to implicate him. Whatever the issue, the office deserves respect.”

Also speaking, President, Arewa Youth Consultative Forum (AYCF), Alhaji Yerima Shettima, said: “In politics, anything goes. But I have never seen or read in history the kind of ongoing faceoff between the presidency and the legislative arm of government where the president of the Senate, with the volume of money senators receive, could be implicated in robbery? It is strange and unbelievable.

“Even if he is the biological father of the criminals, that does not mean he is aware of everything they do. On the other hand, if they were his political thugs, the presidency or any other politicians should come out and convince Nigerians they don’t have thugs in their political team? I am not approving the use of thugs in politics, but it is synonymous with us in Nigeria.”

However, in the face of all the emerging political development, the opposition PDP has said it is putting structures in place to embrace the massive return of all former members who mistakenly  thought that the ‘Change’ promised Nigerians in 2015 was real.