DEPUTY national publicity secretary of the All Progressives Congress and member of the aggrieved power block, the New Peoples Democratic Party, ( nPDP) Chief Timi Frank has cautioned leadership of the APC and the Presidency not to ignore the group demand for audience.
A new faction led by former Nasarawa state governor, Senator Adamu Abdullahi, however, faulted the claim of marginalization of the NPDP at a press briefing on Monday.
Speaking with newsmen on Tuesday, Frank said the continued indifference of the APC leadership to the petition could be inimical to the political fortune of the APC in 2019.
He said: “Today makes it seven days from the day our group brought this letter to the party. But as it stands, we’ve not gotten any response yet from them. As we’ve said, whatever we must have said in that letter, it is not an empty threat. If they fail to ignore us, so, be it. But at the appropriate time, we are going to respond to Nigerians based on what we’ve said. It is not just a mere threat, it is not just a mere ultimatum but I will tell you clearly that we are meeting our leaders, we are going to come up with a clear position to brief Nigerians on our next step if finally, they don’t attend to us.”
“I want to use this opportunity to remind my party that this is same way we were trying to correct the wrongs of Dr Jonathan’s government then in the PDP, they never listened to us, we told them when we were aggrieved, our leaders moved round the states to talk to party members, to ask the government at that time to listen to our views but at the end of the day, they refused, they ignored us, that is how we left.
“And when we left, we happened to join the APC and that was how today, we are enjoying from this so-called change agenda we are talking about. So, if today 95 per cent of us, who came from the new PDP is aggrieved and they felt they are going to undermine us, or they are going to ignore our group, so be it.”
The APC spokesman faulted the claim of the Senator Abdullahi claim that the nPDP power block has benefited immensely since the inception of President Muhammadu Buhari, as he noted that the duo of Senate President, Bukola Saraki and the Speaker of House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara defeated the anointed candidates of the party and the Presidency for the exalted offices.
“I want to go back to some of the benefits that they said our group has benefitted. Senator Abdullahi and Honourable Jibrin said yesterday that we benefited in achieving Senate President from the new PDP, the Speaker, some senators, governors and so on. For God’s sake, these are elected positions.
“Nigerians are aware how we succeeded in getting the Senate President from the new PDP and the Speaker from the new PDP. They weren’t supported by our party. They were neither supported by the executive arm of government.
We managed to get these two positions by the grace of God and by the support of Nigerian people.
“And also the support of senators and members of the House that believed, have confidence in the leadership of Senator Bukola Saraki and Hon. Yakubu Dogara and they chose to stand by these two people because they believe these two people will take the party and Nigerians to the promise land. So far so good, we are very happy with them, they’ve done very well despite challenges and the circumstances and hurdles they passed and they are still passing through till today.
“So, nobody should give credit to neither the party nor anybody to say that they gave us anything from the new PDP. We fought to get these two positions.
“These people were elected in their various states, they were elected by their people to represent them in the Senate and in the house of representatives. They never got there based on the fact that the new PDP should be able to benefit because they contributed in bringing the change and the government of today, therefore, let’s reward them with these positions. So, this is not true.
It is very clear within our group today, the only two beneficiaries we can remember in our group is Rotimi Amaechi who finally became the Minister of Transportation and Sen. Hajiya Alhassan who became the Minister for Women Affairs. These are the two people we can remember. So, I want to make it very clear again that we are not going to be intimidated by any group or anybody.”