By BEN AGANDE
ABUJA – Leaders of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP were at the weekend rushing against time to resolve the crisis in the party to prepare for a smooth and acceptable convention next Wednesday.
The factional national chairman of the party, Senator Ali Modu Sheriff who had last Tuesday spurned peace entreaties initiated by the Board of Trustees, BoT appeared to unbend following new offers of peace from him Saturday Vanguard learnt yesterday.
This was upon the unending shuttles embarked by some members of the Reconciliation Committee and some governors who descended on Abuja to find a way out of the crisis.
Among those spearheading the talks between Sheriff and the mainstream of the party led by Senator Ahmed Makarfi, chairman of the National Caretaker Committee, was Prof. Jerry Gana, the chairman of the Reconciliation Committee.
Saturday Vanguard learnt that Gana in between shuttles between Sheriff and the Makarfi Committee was able to get some softening of tones leading to optimism that the convention would hold as scheduled.
However, among the lowered conditions from Sheriff was that he would co-chair the national convention with Senator Makarfi. Sheriff it was learnt was also demanding the position of National Secretary for his acolyte.
Senator Sheriff in continuing to hold out was insisting that that though he was ready to negotiate with leaders of the party, it does “not mean that we are going to agree on anything that will affect our integrity, followership and our political interests”.
Meanwhile, the governor of Gombe state, Ibrahim Dankwambo has called on leaders of the party to make sacrifices in order to move the party forward.
Speaking at a meeting of PDP North East Zonal Caucus in Abuja, Governor Dankwambo said that this is the best time to sacrifice for the party.
“In the past, so many things have remained issues of great concern. Now is the time to make sacrifice for all of us on old or new things that come our ways as a duty to the party. Everybody is weeping and crying at the same time.
In another development, the PDP Youth Roundtable has thrown its weight behind the proposed convention of the party in Portharcourt.
In a communique issued at the end of its meeting in Abuja to commemorate the United Nations World Youth Day in Abuja, urged the Caretaker Committee to conduct an open, transparent, credible and competitive elections for all the candidates.
It noted that “there is an Urgent need for the PDP to have a Viable Youth Wing within the party that will effectively mainstream youth participation in the affairs of the party and address the gap in the apparent dearth of operational arm of the party.