Apparently unable to deal with the Alhaji Kawu Baraje-led new Peoples Democratic Party’s (nPDP) slow pace of talks with the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and other smaller political parties in forming a coalition against the All Progressives Congress (APC), another group known as ‘Reformed APC’ has emerged from the aggrieved group within the ruling APC.
Led by former Governor of Kano State, Senator Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso and other top members of the APC, especially at the National Assembly, the new group were formally announce its departure from the ruling party by Friday.
A member of the group told THISDAY in Abuja yesterday, “It appears Baraje and Senate President Bukola Saraki and their group are tied down by their endless discussion with APC.’’
According to the source, one of the leaders of Kwakwansiyya, a political group of Kwankwaso, “I don’t think many of us are comfortable with the slow pace of their political activities. So we have decided to move on. We have less than seven months to the general election and we cannot engage in an endless talk with APC.
“The new group, the Reformed APC being led by Kwankwaso and others, has decided to set up an interim committee with representatives from other parties like the Social Democratic Party (SDP) and other smaller parties to sign Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with PDP.’’
He disclosed that the emerging political group has completed the constitution of its interim committee and would be announced before Friday and early next week.
Asked whether the Baraje-led group has backed out of the conversation to form a coalition against APC or not, the close political associate of the former Kano State governor said, “I do not think so; we just noticed that they are too slow. And we do not have time on our side. They might still come to negotiation table with us and PDP, under the platform of nPDP.
“At the end of the day, we will all end up in PDP, with a strong understanding on how we should relate to defeat APC in the 2019 general election. But on our part, we have gone far with PDP, and the outcome of our discussion will be made known in the next few days.’’
THISDAY reported yesterday that members of the Baraje-led nPDP, an aggrieved group within the ruling APC, held a late night meeting on Monday to determine the way forward.
Among those said to have met included, Saraki; Governor of Sokoto State, Alhaji Aminu Tambuwal, and about 50 lawmakers from both chambers of the National Assembly.
Members of the group appeared to be divided over which party to move to. While majority of them agreed they should move straight to the PDP, others were said to have suggested that they should first and foremost form a coalition with SDP and others before they negotiate with PDP.
THISDAY gathered that the outcome of the conversation by the group was to be made known before Friday, with about 20 APC senators and many members of House of Representatives defecting.
Kwankwaso was in Ado-Ekiti, the Ekiti State capital last week, to inform Governor Ayo Fayose about his resolve to return to PDP.
He also met with former Vice-President Atiku Abubakar on the same issue.
Members of the former nPDP bloc within the APC had addressed a letter dated April 27, 2018 to the then Chairman of the APC, Chief John Odigie-Oyegun, where they informed the party of their grievances and expectations from both the party and President Muhammadu Buhari.
Following the development, the party invited them and they met with the leadership of the party.
But following the escalation of hostility by the federal government against leading members of the bloc, including Saraki, Governor Abdulfatah Ahmed, Senator Jonah Jang and Senator Peter Nwaboshi, who were confronted with criminal allegations by state security agencies, the nPDP pulled out of the peace initiatives.
Last week, Baraje said in a statement that the bloc would make its decision on its future with the APC known this week.