APC alternative to PDP in 2015 – Gov. Aliyu
Niger state Governor, Dr. Mu’azu Babangida Aliyu, yesterday stirred the hornet’s nest again when he declared that there is no more room for sit tight leaders to perpetuate themselves in power with the emergence of a mega party like the All Progressive Congress (APC).
Babangida Aliyu, the chairman of Northern Governors Forum, in an apparently veiled reference to the controversy over a single term agreement between President Goodluck Jonathan and state governors, said the emergence of APC is a “stirring call to the ruling People’s Democratic Party (PDP)”, maintaining that the political terrain in the country will be better for it.
But President Goodluck Jonathan said yesterday he would not be distracted by the debate on whether he agreed with PDP governors in 2011 to rule for only one term.
The President, in a statement signed by one of his Senior Special Assistants, Dr. Doyin Okupe, was apparently reacting to the statement made earlier by Dr. Babangida Aliyu, that Jonathan had entered into an agreement with PDP governors that he would rule for only one term of four years, as a precondition for the support of the governors.
Babangida Aliyu, speaking in Minna at the inauguration of new members of the state executive council at the Government House, said that the merger of some political parties would lead to formation of two party system.
“Nigerians will have a choice during any election”, he said, adding that “those that feel that they can rule forever will also be told by the people that there is an alternative”.
Governor Aliyu asked PDP to put its act together and continue to deliver on promises. With the merger of these political parties, the PDP must go out and compete favorably for the minds of the people’, he said.
On the reconstitution of the state executive council which saw the dropping of three commissioners who were however appointed Special Advisers, Dr Aliyu said he took the step to reposition the government for better performance in the remaining period it has to serve the people.
“With the 27 months we have left to leave office we are consolidating on the things we have done right, we will correct those things we have done wrongly and continue to serve the people to the best of our ability”, he said.
Aliyu admonished new commissioners that the government has more to do for the people ‘but there is no time’ and therefore challenged them to always be on their toes and regularly return to their communities to get the feelings of the people.
Aliyu said that the administration will continue to execute the 3-arms zone, Minna airport city, and the upgrading of all the major towns and cities in the state projects even as he added that the Ward Development Project which has received international acclaim will be given more support.
The new Secretary to the State Government, Alhaji Saidu Idris Ndako, new Chief of Staff, Mr. Joshua Bawa, new Head of Service Barrister Abbas Bello and Deputy Chief of Staff Alhaji Mohammed Saba Usman were among those that took their oaths of office.
Presidential spokesman, Dr. Doyin Okupe said: “Our attention has been drawn to issues raised by some political leaders to the effect that President Goodluck Jonathan signed an agreement with some Governors elected on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party prior to the Party’s presidential primaries in 2011.
“From time immemorial, for every major event or contest in the world, there is always a time and a season apportioned. We wish to state categorically that this is neither the time nor the season to begin electioneering campaign or related discourse for the 2015 presidential elections and so President Goodluck Jonathan will not jump the gun.
“Mr. President will therefore stoutly resist any disguised or open attempt to drag him into any debates, arguments or political discussions relating to a presidential election in 2015.
“The president considers this as an invidious attempt to sway him from his chosen pursuit of the set out constituents of the transformation agenda which form the basis upon which Nigerians overwhelmingly elected him to steer the ship of the Nation in 2011,” Okupe stated.