Bamanga Tukur, national chairman of Peoples Democratic Party, survives an impeachment plot at the party’s national executive committee meeting
| By Olu Ojewale | Jul. 1, 2013 @ 01:00 GMT
AGAINST all odds, Bamanga Tukur, national chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, survived the plot to remove him from office on Thursday, June 20. Opponents of Tukur had promised to pass a vote of no-confidence on their chairman because of his alleged heavy-handedness in dealing with personalities and issues in the party. But the National Executive Committee, NEC, held in Abuja, on Thursday, June 20, eventually gave Tukur a new lease of life. Indications from the meeting showed that Tukur has President Goodluck Jonathan to thank for his survival. Jonathan was said to have spoken for more than 10 minutes pleading with angry NEC members not to remove him yet.
Before the president’s intervention, the disgruntled state chairmen had condemned Tukur’s style of administration and listed all his infractions, especially his disrespect for the party’s constitution regarding the NEC’s quarterly meeting. Thus, they demanded his removal forthwith. But President Jonathan observed that tempers were rising, he quickly stepped in. He acknowledged their grievances concerning how Tukur had been running the party and pleaded for their understanding. He said if they should remove him now, it would create an impression that the party was still in disarray.
A newspaper quoted the president as saying, “Tukur has come to beg me. I have assured him that I will intervene at the NEC meeting on his behalf. Please, do not let him go today. Before you know it, the media will be saying ‘Jonathan has dumped Tukur’; ‘PDP is on fire’ and so on.” Having resolved that, the party continued with its meeting. The NEC also resolved to hold a mini-convention on July 20, to fill vacancies created by the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC’s, verdict that eight members of the PDP National Working Committee, NWC, were not properly elected. The affected officers resigned on Wednesday, June 19.
Meanwhile, the NEC appointed some members in acting capacity to run the party secretariat with Tukur and two others that were properly elected. The interim officers are: Chibudum Nwuche, acting deputy national chairman; Remi Akintoye, acting national secretary; Emma Agboti, acting deputy national secretary; Yusuf Abubakar, acting national organising secretary; Tony Okeke, acting national publicity secretary; Simon Jok, acting national legal adviser; Mohammed Sa’ad, acting national youth leader and Oyibo Nwaneri, acting woman leader. The party will also hold a zonal congress in the South-West, on July 11.