It was jubilating galore wednesday for members of the Ahmed Makarki-led faction of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) as the Supreme Court affirmed his leadership of the party.
As usual, the verdict by the apex court, elicited reactions from a cross-section of party faithful who hailed the decision and called on members of the party to come together in order to win the presidency in 2019.
Makarfiâ€™s Victory, Reawakening for PDP, Says Okowa
Governor Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta State has described the victory of the Senator Ahmed Makarfi-led Caretaker Committee of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) at the Supreme Court as a reawakening for the party.
Okowa also said the judiciary has also, by this judgement, further vindicated its reliability and independence in the discharge of its statutory functions especially in upholding democracy in the country.
In a statement signed on behalf of the governor by his Chief Press Secretary, Mr. Charles Aniagwu, the governor said the judgement by the five-man panel of Justices of the Supreme Court headed by the Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Justice Walter Onnoghen, is a victory for democracy in Nigeria.
Okowa lauded the apex court for the â€œsound ruling,â€ which has put to rest the protracted leadership crisis that has bedeviled the party, which he described as the biggest political party in sub-Saharan Africa.
The governor therefore urged members of the party to be accommodating to any Nigerian who wishes to join the party, noting: â€œThe umbrella is large enough to accommodate any Nigerian; it is a party Nigerians are happy to identify with.â€
Mimiko: Judgmentâ€™s Victory for Rule of Law
Former Governor of Ondo State, Dr. Olusegun Mimiko, yesterday described the judgement of the Supreme Court on the leadership crisis that has rocked the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) as a victory for the rule of law. Mimiko, in a statement issued by his media aide, Eni Akinsola, congratulated leaders and members of the party across the country on the judgement.
According to him, â€œThe judiciary must be commended for this judgement which is a victory for justice, rule of law and democracy.
â€œThe judgement, to my mind, will strengthen our democracy and discourage political and judicial rascality of any sort as we move ahead as a nation.â€
Imbibe The Spirit of True Reconciliation, Umahi Urges PDP Supporters
The National Vice Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), South-east zone, Chief Austin Umahi, has congratulated Senator Ahmed Makarfi for his victory on the Supreme Court judgement that affirmed him as the authentic national chairman of the party.
In a statement, Umahi described Makarfiâ€™s victory as remarkable, but appealed to all members and supporters of the party in the South-east zone to embrace the victory with maturity and in the spirit of true reconciliation.
Umahi also commended the National Working Committee (NWC) of the party for their doggedness and belief in the Nigeriaâ€™s judiciary as the last hope of the common man, as he called on Alli Sheriff and other members of the party to unite with Makarfi leadership to regain the country and save it from imminent collapse.
He noted that the victory was a second chance given for the party to consolidate and put its house in order for the task of recovering its lost glory, urging other zonal leaders and stakeholders of the party to reconcile with any aggrieved members of the party.
Lagos PDP Congratulates
Makarfi-led Caretaker Committee
The Lagos State chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) led by a former senatorial candidate, Mr. Segun Adewale, has congratulated the Senator Ahmed Markafi caretaker committee on his victory at the Supreme Court.
In a statement signed by the state Deputy Chairman, Hon. Kamal Owolabi Olorunoje, yesterday and sent to THISDAY, the party lauded the judgement of the apex court, and extolled the judiciary as the hope of the common man.
The party urged the Markafi group to make the PDP stronger and strengthen the grassroots by respecting the congresses held by the Sheriff faction, noting that there were no contentions at the state and local government and ward levels.
It added that the party at the national level should speedily organise a national convention that would usher in a more progressive executives that would operate as a formidable opposition to the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC).
Disquiet in Aâ€™Ibom after Supreme Court Verdict
There was disquiet in Uyo, Akwa Ibom State capital, yesterday after the Supreme Court judgment that declared that Senator Ahmed Makarfi was the authentic National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), thus bringing to rest 14 months of internal legal tussle of the leadership of the party.
Carnival and drums often witnessed in the streets of the state capital including the road to the Government House along Wellington Bassey-way in celebration by partyâ€™s faithful in the event of this nature were completely absent by the time of filling in this report.
Reacting to the Supreme Court ruling, some prominent stakeholders of the party in the state described the court verdict as â€œvictory for democracy and the rule of lawâ€ in the country.
In an interview, the state Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice, Mr. Uwemedimo Nwoko, said the ruling has put to rest the internal crisis between Makarfi and Senators Ali Modu Sheriff, which had almost cripple the entire structure of the party.
The judgment, he said would go a long way in setting the tone for the rebuilding process in the party and place it in good stead to reclaim its ruling party status in 2019.
Also speaking, the state Publicity Secretary of the PDP, Ini Ememobong, described the outcome of the ruling as â€œno victor, no vanquish but a victory for democracy and the rule of law.â€
Letâ€™s Close Ranks to Wrest Power from APC, Says Kwara PDP Chairman
The Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Kwara State, Sunday Fagbemi, yesterday appealed to members of the party across the 36 states of the federation to close ranks and work together to wrest power from the All Progressives Congress(APC) in the 2019 general election.
Speaking in Ilorin on the sideline of the Supreme Court judgment that affirmed the leadership of the Senator Ahmed Makarfi faction of the PDP, Fagbemi said the losing Senator Ali Modu Sheriff group should put the judgment behind it and work together to salvage the nation from her present economic doldrums and poverty currently affecting the people of the country.
According to him, â€œWe should all come together irrespective of our affiliation and be more united so as to vote out the APC and bring in new lease of life to the people of the country. Members of the party should borrow a new leaf from the PDP in Osun State and defeat the incumbent APC government.â€
A Victory for All PDP Members, Says Oko
Senator Rose Oko, has said the victory is for all members of the PDP.
Oko, in her reaction, described the ruling as victory for the soul of democracy and justice.
According to her, â€œToday, I join our party faithful and its teeming supporters to congratulate the chairman of the caretaker committee of our great party, Makarfi, and his team over today (yesterdayâ€™s) victory at the Supreme Court.
â€œWith the victory, our hope and faith have been reawakened and our resolve for a stable polity has been guaranteed.
â€œI use this medium to call on all our party faithful and numerous supporters across the divide to use todayâ€™s verdict as a means to unify our bond towards strengthening the party.â€
Former Lawmaker Commends Ruling
The only South-west Peoples Democratic Party senator in the 7th National Assembly, Senator Hosea Agboola, yesterday commended Nigeriaâ€™s judiciary, just as he urged partyâ€™s governors, former Senate President, David Mark, and incumbent Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu, to join Senator Ahmed Makarfi in leading the partyâ€™s rebuilding process.
Agboola, a leader of the party in Oyo State, commended judiciary for strengthening democracy in the country with the outcome of the Supreme Court verdict in favour of Senator Makarfi.
Agboola, who was also the Deputy Senate Whip, said the PDP would bounce back to its winning ways in 2019 as manifested in the recent Osun West by-election and the latest courtâ€™s verdict.
â€œThis victory is for all Nigerians. It will assist the nation to have robust democratic dividends through virile opposition,â€ he stated.
We Were Sacrificial Lamb But No Regret, Says Jegede on Ruling
The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) candidate for the November 2016 gubernatorial election in Ondo State, Eyitayo Jegede (SAN), yesterday said though his team was thrown up as a sacrificial lamb of the factional crisis that rocked the party, the group has no regret over the battle.
Jegede made the remarks in a statement circulated on social media yesterday over the judgment of the Supreme Court, which recognised Alhaji Ahmed Makarfi as the National Chairman of PDP.
He said the judgment by the highest court in the land had again vindicated his team.
â€œAlthough we were thrown up as sacrificial lamb through the long and tortuous journey, nevertheless, we are glad that our fight and experience have since counted for institutional strength and wisdom for our party, so we have no regrets,â€ he said.
The candidate said the verdict would signal the beginning of a process of genuine reconciliation and self-cleansing, healing and rebirth that will usher in a new season of hope and refreshing for the people.
Abia PDP Chieftains Hail Verdict
The Supreme Court judgment delivered in favour of the Ahmed Makarfi-led Caretaker Committee of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) was received with joy by party chieftains in Abia State, which they described as â€œbreath of fresh air.â€
The immediate past state Chairman of PDP, Senator Emma Nwaka, said the verdict which has finally settled the leadership dispute was â€œa good forecasting for democracy.â€
According to him, â€œWith this judgment, all the efforts to muzzle credible opposition in Nigeria have, to the glory of God, crumbled,â€ adding that the opposition PDP would now be strengthened to play its role more effectively.
Nwaka said all party faithful deserve commendation â€œfor their steadfastness in the face of all efforts to make them jump shipâ€ as has become the fashion among politicians when thereâ€™s misunderstanding in the party.
He said with this victory, â€œPDP is primed to retake power at the centre in 2019â€ as the party would now move in unity devoid of distractions and internal rancour.
In his reaction, a chieftain of the party in the state, Chief Onyema Ugochukwu, said he received the news of the verdict with joy, adding that he was grateful to God as the storm was now over and PDP is now breathing well.