The public exhibition of turbulent uncertainty by the major stakeholders of the Peoples Democratic Party [PDP] on the weekend of August 31, 2013 appears on a new turn as the President of the federal republic of Nigeria, Dr. Goodluck Ebelemi Jonathan was told in confidence by the former president of the federal republic of Nigeria, General Olusegun Obasanjo that the troubles befalling the PDP and the Jonathan administration concerns his [Jonathan] insistence on contesting for the 2015 presidential elections under the PDP. According to a source prevalent with the happenings between the two leaders, Obasanjo told Jonathan categorically to “forget about 2015”. The statement was reportedly made on Sunday following the special PDP convention.
Particularly, information available to 247ureports.com revealed that the move to abandon the ‘old PDP’ began four months ago [in late April 2013] following an informal meeting where a few of the PDP governors and other major stakeholders impressed on the President on their intentions towards his 2015 presidential agenda, and the manner with which he has decided to go about it. The group was said to have told the president that they were not particularly pleased with the way he is going about his 2015 aspirations.
The group was said to have reminded the President of the agreement he reached with the group in the presence of many northern leaders – including Emirs and other traditional leaders in the north. According to one of the group members who spoke to 247ureports.com, General Obasanjo was the one who took Jonathan around the many quarters of the north to present him as a President that would only serve ‘one-tenure’. “He was not forced. He agreed voluntarily in the presence of many northern governors, Emirs, legislators and others”, said the group member who happens to be a seating governor of a northern state.
The source continued to add that no one is trying to deny President Jonathan’s constitutional rights of contesting for a second term in office but the fact remains that “we had an agreement to support him in return for his serving one term”.
Cursory inquiry revealed that originally the group was not particular about the 2015 ambition of the President – as it later became. It was understood that the group had ‘wished’ for the President to have approached them regarding his change of mind to contest in 2015. Instead, according to a member of the group, the President recruited his ‘Ijaw henchmen’ to begin public utterances threatening to wreak havoc should the President not be allowed to contest the 2015 elections. The source pointed to a year after the Jonathan’s 2011 elections – when the likes of Edwin Clark and Asaro Dokubo – took to the airwaves to threaten violence should Jonathan not contest in 2015.
Following the threats by the President’s kinsmen, the source noted that the President then switched over to the internal operations of the PDP with an ‘iron fist’ to deal with those he perceived were not in support of his bid for 2015. “It became dictatorial”. He appointed executives to the PDP executive cabinet arbitrary without due consultations or necessary elections. “If he had approached us to discuss it might have not resulted to this embarrassment on his person”.
It was gathered that when the President began his outward launch to dislodge persons/stakeholders he believe were possible obstacles to his 2015 ambition – the former president, Obasanjo was said to impress on him the agreement reached with many of the northern leaders who were concerned over the leadership rotation. The President was said to be unresponsive to Obasanjo. With this, Obasanjo’s allegiance switched.
A usually reliable source told our correspondent that Obasanjo was the pilot of the walk out by the rebel governors. “He did to prove a point to Jonathan; he does not want to destroy PDP”. Obasanjo had advised against abandoning the party for another party. According to Obasanjo, it was better to retain the option to joining another party until it becomes impossible to remain in the PDP.
Meanwhile many of the governor and members of the national assembly who had earlier declared for the new PDP – in talking to 247ureports.com – indicated that they are out for the Jonathan led PDP “to do their worst”. According to one of the architects of the group, they have lost control of the party. “Pretty soon they will see what will happen at the lower and upper chamber of the national assembly”, bragged the source who continued to add that “Jonathan has been cornered for good”.
President Jonathan was taken unawares by what appears to resemble a security concern on the August 31, 2013 walk out by the group of governors at the grounds of the PDP special convention. This was as 247ureports.com was reliably informed of the anger that overtook President Jonathan as he realized that he was the only one unaware of the alternate arrangement made by the ‘rebel governors’ at Musa Yar’Adua Center for a parallel meeting – against the Jonathan/Tukur led PDP. As gathered, the President was livid that he did not have prior knowledge of the meeting – even though it appeared his security and intelligence men may have had prior knowledge. Our source points to a grander implication of the security and/or intelligence blackout over the President – as having a possible dire affect in the future. He points to the safety of the president being possibly compromised