Monday, 5 December 2016

We will keep as top secret how we will reclaim power from APC – Makarfi

The Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, National Caretaker Committee Chairman, Ahmed Makarfi, has asserted that the party is keeping as top secret how it will reclaim power from the, All Progressives Congress, APC.
In an interview with Daily Trust, Makarfi expressed optimism that the party will equally reclaim its alleged stolen Ondo mandate in court.
Recall that the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, had
declared Rotimi Akeredolu of the All Progressives Congress, APC, winner of the November 26 governorship election in the state after polling 244,842 votes to beat his closest rival, Eyitayo Jegede of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, who polled 150, 380 votes, while Mr Olusola Oke of the Alliance for Democracy, AD, followed with 126, 889 votes.
The former Kaduna State governor also maintained that the leading opposition party will return to power in 2019.
When asked why he was that sure, Makarfi said, “If I tell you that, it will be like disclosing the secret of the PDP and I won’t do that.”
Speaking further, Makarfi said, “The future of the PDP is very bright. We know that it’s not going to be an easy task. We are passing through the worst period you can ever think of, but we will recover.
“Well, Edo, to me, was manipulated and taken away. That is why we are at the tribunal, and we believe that if good work is done by our counsels at the tribunal, we will remain above board. We believe we are going to win because we have a new judiciary. It is far more responsive, fair and just. I believe our mandate will return to us.
“When we went to Ondo, there were factors and room for complaints. Some factors were within the control of stakeholders while some were beyond them. Some were external, which we are much aware of. The internal issue relates to state politics and other issues that are really state-based. I really won’t go into details. On external factors, our candidate was finally cleared two days before the election, and to move around the state in two days to cover grounds was a tall order.
“Again, INEC’s position that the submitted list of agents was by the party was a problem. The law stated that they were party agents, not candidate’s, hence they were recognised. This prompted a big question: which party? We didn’t submit the list of agents. Those who took us to court, the Sen. Ali Modu Sheriff camp, just submitted the list of agents, which INEC accepted.
“Naturally, you wouldn’t expect them to be effective agents because the person they wanted was not the one standing for the election. I think INEC should have considered the recent court judgement and given the party the leeway to change its agents if it so desired, thereby escaping from sharing some blames for virtually lack of representation at the polling units.
“Again, if you look the video clip being circulated by Jimoh Ibrahim, where he boasted and gave reasons why they went to court etc, it is clear that it was intended to destabilise the PDP and prevent the candidate from campaigning. So the Modu Sheriff side has spoken, through their candidate, that the reason they were in the race was to prevent the PDP from winning. Even the blind and the dumb can draw a conclusion that very serious anti-party activities took place.
“I was disappointed by the result and what happened; but if you ask me whether I am really bothered as we walk towards 2019, I will tell you I am not. When we had a central government in the PDP, which stand-alone election did we lose? But when the general election came, what happened? So a stand-alone election needs a party with central power to mobilise everything there to come up with a particular result, but when general election comes, you are on your own; there is no gang-up per se. If you are on ground, you are on ground, if you are not, I am sorry. So no matter the difficulty, we will continue participating in elections, believing that when it comes to general elections, the story will be different.”

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