By Chibuzo Ukaibe,
National chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Sen Ahmed Makarfi, yesterday, declared that the party cannot afford to cut corners anymore if it intends to thrive.
This comes as former governors of Oyo State, Rasheed Ladoja and Alao Akala, have returned to the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) as their representatives attended a meeting of party leaders with the national leadership of the party in Abuja.
Ladoja and Akala, after serving single terms each as governor of the state at different dispensations, defected to Accord Party (APC) and the All Progressives Cong.ress (APC), respectively.
Representatives of the former governors participated in a meeting of PDP stakeholders in Oyo State and the national leadership of the party.
While Sen Femi Lanlehin was one of the representatives of Rasheed Ladoja, Biodun Tajudeen Kareem was one of the representatives of Alao Akala. Speaking at the meeting, with former principal officers, Sen Makarfi, said, “I will stick to the party guideline and constitution in doing whatever we do. We must stop cutting corners. We live in a high litigious society.
“When we cut corners thinking that nobody will see you, a lot of people have seen you, and at a time you least expect, somebody will drag you to court again. Therefore, what is worth doing is worth doing well. We must consult on fundamental issues, use consensus as much as possible and move forward.”
He added “We’ve gotten judiciary victory, we need to consolidate and translate it into political victory. Political victory means expanding the scope of the party, reconciling with the reconcilable and attracting members into the party that will enable us regain political power at the centre by overwhelming majority. What I don’t want is for one party to dominate. We want a healthy competitive democracy where people will freely choose their leaders.”
Speaking with leaders from Oyo State, Makarfi who regretted that the party lost the state, noted that nobody stands to gain when internal acrimony results in loss of election.
He further said, “We are not in politics to suffer but form government”, adding “PDP was the dominant party in the state but internal crisis caused us to lose election.”
While he added that everybody would have been accommodated if they had won the election, the chairman asked “What are we benefitting for losing election now? Nothing. So we have to draw a line.”
Makarfi who also met with party leaders from Osun State, urged them to close ranks and work together to reclaim the state.
While he commended them for setting a record in forging a common front in the recent Osun West senatorial election, he urged them to sheathe their swords.
Reacting to conflicting court judgments over party leadership in the state he said, “If you wait for the conflicting judgements to be settled, it will get to Supreme Court and it won’t guarantee victory.
“The problem is not as big as it is made to look like. All we need in our opinion is to resolve to accommodate and have a state committee that is inclusive.
“Short cuts in PDP won’t work anymore. It can be used against us when they see that we are winning.
“We should look out for our common interest and clear the mess so that when we succeed at the polls, that success won’t be at the mercy of the tribunal to interpret it any way it likes.”