The repeat National Convention of the Peoples Democratic Party took place in Port Harcourt on 17th August 2016 despite an order from the pesidency that Sharks Stadium, the venue earlier scheduled to host the event be sealed off by men of the Nigerian Army, an obvious attempt by the APC led federal government to keep the former ruling party off balance perpetually.
The Ekiti State Governor, Mr. Ayodele Fayose spoke with news men after the convention at the Rivers State Old Presidential Lodge, Port Harcourt.
Your convention still held despite what the police did, what’s your reaction to the police’s actions
It’s an unfortunate development in our history, I will term that and this period as perilous times, it’s a period of sober reflection for our nation. In desperation to kill opposition, in desperation to make Nigeria one party state and am glad that most of the things I alluded to in the earlier part of this administration are gradually coming to pass that the president and the APC led government of President Buhari is a dictatorial government and they have exhibited it severally.
What will be the interest of APC in the PDP business, we have to have a re-think. There is tension everywhere, in the financial industry, in the economy of our people, in all sectors, they have failed the nation and the only thing left is to kill the opposition so they can perpetuate themselves into power but tough times never last but tough people do. If Nigerians didn’t give APC opportunity to govern us, it would have been another story. What happened overnight in Port Harcourt is unfortunate for our democracy, it portends no hope for this democracy and we must appreciate that PDP handed over government to APC in a celebrated democratic process built over time by the PDP. Muscling us by certain interest groups in the APC is unfortunate. Ali Modu Sheriff is an instrument in the hands of the opposition but we will leave him there over time but I know that Nigerians will recall all that I have said now and begin to measure where we are now and where we used to be.
Police said they acted on court orders, what does that mean?
You see if you want to act on court orders, there have been about four to five court orders in favour of Makarfi, they never acted but they know when this party is at peace, Nigerians will be emboldened to challenge them, there will be credible alternative, they want to destroy this credible alternative, the government after one year is still blaming the opposition for which most of their members served in the 16 years of PDP, it’s unfortunate. They should pay attention to the dwindling economy of our country, they should pay attention to diversification, addressing this harsh economic policies. No directional position of their government, they should pay attention to all these, stand this decay and slide in the system as quickly as possible, pay attention to security instead of muscling opposition. This is cheer muscling of the opposition.
A word for the delegates who has come from far and wide, their hopes have not been rekindled.
I just want to encourage the PDP members, the committed PDP members who has taken time to travel from far and wide, from Sokoto, from Ibadan, from Lagos, from the East, from all walks of life, the leadership of the party shares their pain and I just want to say that they should keep hope alive, we would see light at the end of the tunnel.
Likelihood of holding the convention within the next one year
Since they have given them one year, within the space of one year, the life span have been extended and over time most of this legal issues would have been resolved and am sure the next thing is to hand over to a democratically elected executive, that is the joy of everybody.