Jonathan, Fayose, Ekweremadu express optimism
Onyebuchi Ezigbo in Abuja
The National Caretaker Committee Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Senator Ahmed Makarfi, has said if the party sustains its current momentum, it will only take a miracle for it not to win back the presidency in 2019.
Speaking at a meeting of the expanded national caucus of the party held at the national headquarters in Abuja, Makarfi said all the party needs to do is to close ranks and work hard to realise the target.
â€œIf PDP sustains the current effort at rebuilding its restructures, I assure you it would only take a miracle for us not to win the election in 2019.â€
Makarfi whose speech was intermittently interrupted by ovations from the appreciative audience in the hall, said the leadership decided to hold the caucus meeting in order to see the faces of members and celebrate and strategise on the way forward for the party.
He restated the position of the party not to punish any one for his role in the long- drawn crisis that bedeviled the party.
He, however, warned: â€œWhile we are reconciling, we will not give what belongs to a person and to another.
â€œWe intend to bring everybody on board and then move our party forward.â€
Yesterdayâ€™s meeting of the national caucus was almost turned into a campaign rally of some sort, considering the number party leaders were in the hall.
The momentum got even higher when the former President, Dr. Goodluck Jonathan, entered the hall as the crowed hall erupted in loud ovation that lasted for almost five minutes.
In his remarks, Jonathan expressed optimism that PDP would recover from the present state to become the toast of Nigerians once again.
He said if the leadership continues the good work it is doing that time would come when everyone would begin to find their way back to the party, adding that even those who had left would not need to be begged to come back.
â€œToday is day of joy for all us, I decided to come to this meeting not to present any speech but. I came to thank the leaders and members of the party. I felt that this first meeting is the best time to come and thank you all for standing with the party.
â€œI believe that key decisions are to going to made tonight on how to chart the way forward. Let us cooperate with the party leadership to rebuild the party. All our efforts within this period should be geared towards rebuilding the party.â€
The former president said some members of the public who are not PDP members called him after the Supreme Court judgment to show solidarity.
In spite of negative tantrums against PDP, it is still the party of all Nigerians,â€ he said.
The chairman of the PDP Governorsâ€™ Forum, Governor Ayo Fayose, also expressed optimism that PDP would clinch power in 2019.
â€œAPC will soon die for PDP to inherit power. If your brother is alive, you will not inherit his property. He will need to die before you inherit his property. These people must go; I say they must go. Now the coast is clear. This party must bounce back, we must regain the confidence of Nigerians,â€ he said.
Fayose urged party leaders to go back to their villages in order to help rebuild and reposition the affairs of the party at the grassroots.
â€œMost of us here should endeavour to go home and canvass support for the PDP. If this party must return to power, if this party will come back to form, we must all be ready to go back to our villages to work hard for its success, and stop being Abuja politicians,â€ he said.
Earlier, the former acting National Chairman of the party, Uche Secondus, in his very loud prayer to mark the commencement of the dayâ€™s proceedings, thanked God for saving the party from the hands of evil doers and the destabilising hands of the All Progressives Congress (APC).
The highly charged atmosphere at the PDP national secretariat (Wadatta House) in Abuja, saw the presence of many top leaders of the party full of expectations.
The Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu, described PDP as a â€˜Beetleâ€™ that never dies. He said God has seen the sufferings of Nigerians and decided to restore the PDP, adding that come 2019, the party will bounce back to power to return the country to the path of growth again.
Among the top leaders of the party that attended the meeting were, Governors Ayo Fayose, Nyesom Wike, Dairus Ishaku, Senators David Mark, Godswill Akpabio, Dimeji Bankole, Josephine Anenih, Senator Stella Omu, former ministers and lawmakers.