We've uncovered Jonathans plan to arrest Obasanjo, Atiku, others - New PDP
The splinter group of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) known as New Peoples Democratic Party (nPDP) has said former President Olusegun Obasanjo is not its fold.
The National Publicity Secretary of the faction, Chief Chukwuemeka Eze, in a statement in Abuja on Sunday, said the former Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the PDP was not directly or by proxy, linked to the faction of the ruling party.
The group therefore cautioned against arresting or ridiculing the former President over his alleged closeness to the faction.
Eze said former President Obasanjo played an important role in making Dr. Goodluck Jonathan the President of Nigeria and deserved respect.
He said, 'We do not know why General Olusegun Obasanjo (retd.) is being linked with the New PDP.
'Let us state unequivocally that this foremost nationalist has not in any way - either directly or by proxy - had anything to do with our existence and operations.
'Ridiculing and plotting the arrest of such a distinguished personality that fought to keep this nation as one entity and contributed immensely in making the PDP the most vibrant, virile, versatile and biggest political party in Africa as a nobody is not the best strategy to use to fight the cause of President Jonathan, who knows what Chief Obasanjo did to make him President in the first place.'
Similarly, the party also said members of the league of G7 governors and leaders of the Baraje faction have also been marked for arrest and detention.
Governors in the G7 are: Rotimi Amaechi (Rivers); Musa Kwankwaso (Kano); Murtala Nyako (Adamawa); Aliyu Wamakko (Sokoto); Babangida Aliyu (Niger); Sule Lamido (Jigawa); and Abdulfatah Ahmed (Kwara
According to the statement, the nPDP has received intelligence reports that the Presidency is planning what it called 'Operation Total Crackdown on G7 and their allies in the New PDP.'
He said when the report got to them that members of the faction were going to be arrested and jailed without charges, they discarded it, describing it as a joke.
However, he said an interview granted an online medium by Alhaji Mujahid Asari-Dokubo, in which he allegedly said there were pressures on President Goodluck Jonathan to arrest both Obasanjo and a former Vice-President, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, showed that such plan was in the offing.
Eze said, 'The sin of these two distinguished Nigerian statesmen, according to those plotting their 'demystification,' is their alleged support for the New PDP, including the G7 Governors.'
'When we got details of the plot to arrest and commit the leadership of New PDP to prison without charge we thought it was a joke.
'The reality, however, dawned on us after we read the interview of our friend and brother, Alhaji Mujahid Asari-Dokubo, in the PREMIUM TIMES of 26th September, 2013, confirming that President Goodluck Jonathan is under pressure to arrest former President Olusegun Obasanjo and former Vice President Atiku Abubakar without any further delay.
'The sin of these two distinguished Nigerian statesmen, according to those plotting their 'demystification', is their alleged support for the New PDP, including the G7 Governors. That this evil plot is being conceived by the Presidency confirms that the Abacha days are truly here again with us', the statement added.
The party said in view of the development, the leadership of the Baraje group had, in an emergency meeting of its National Working Committee, brainstormed on how best to respond to the plot.
'Our conclusion at the end of the meeting was that we would not be intimidated for any reason, even if it means death, as we are fighting a just cause of reclaiming, recovering and establishing our party based on the vision of its founding fathers as the party is currently usurped by some members who do not know how it was formed.
'Baraje, knowing how dirty some of the hawks in the Presidency can fight when pushed to the wall, directed NWC members to write their wills immediately after the meeting as we have entered the stage of no retreat and no surrender - fully determined to reclaim what rightly belongs to us', the party said.
Baraje urged the G7 Governors not to be intimidated or frightened by any tactics or strategy employed by 'state forces' to coerce them to forgo any of the issues they have been asked to present before President Jonathan in the October 7 meeting.
The party regretted that instead of employing diplomacy to attend to the issues that brought about the present conflict, the Presidency had chosen to apply force.
Baraje said that rather than being disturbed by the plot, his members are ready for any tactics that may be adopted by the Presidency in the alleged crackdown.
'In this regard, we wish to urge both the Presidency and those detailed to attack us not to waste time or wait till October 7 to start arresting us, as there are thousands of Nigerians ready to step into our shoes and fight this cause to its conclusion.
'We are convinced that at the appropriate time; Asari Dokubo will join us when he is convinced as a social crusader, the injustice we have been subjected to in PDP all these years so we are not threatened by his outbursts', Baraje added.