Chairman of Atiku led faction of the PDP, Abubakar Baraje has stated that he would approach the court to jail the Inspector General of Police, IGP Mohammed Abubakar for the sealing up of his faction’s secretariat in Maitama.
He claimed that the courts have resolved that the status quo be maintained, which he stated means the two PDP groups will continue to exist.
He said: “We are going to court to demand that the Police IG should be jailed. The court has ruled that we should maintain the status quo, so for them to go ahead and seal our office is the height of illegality and disrespect for the rule of law.”
“What they did is a clear lack of tolerance for democratic ethos, and it shows that they have no respect for the laws of the land,” he added.
However, a non governmental organization, Media Development Initiative, MDI, commended the IGP for taking measures to check impunity in the land and the restoration of law and order.
A statement by the director of communications of MDI, Martins Onyilokwu stated that the liberal nature of the President is being taken for a ride by Atiku Abubakar and the 7 governors who are working with him.
He said: “The President and the IGP must not allow political miscreants to cause political lawlessness in the country. For now, the PDP has a secretariat duly registered with INEC and a leadership recognized by INEC. These politicians attended the party’s convention and were overwhelmed, only for them to resort to area boy politics. The law enforcement agents must fully enforce the law.
“We call for the prosecution of these political mischief makers. These governors and Atiku formed their different political parties. If they are popular as they claim, they should test their popularity in 2015. Being politicians is no license to lawlessness as nobody is above the law”.
Another online political commentator,Chidinma Onyejiuwa supported the move, saying it is necessary to maintain the integrity of the President’s party.
She said: “The office of Atiku’s PDP is being sealed off by the order of the president is not the first of its kind in the history of Nigerian Government, and by no means unconstitutional. The president has expressed powers – being those written down in the Nigerian Constitution and inherent powers – being those derived from the statements in the Constitution which have executive power vested in a president of the Federal republic of Nigeria. The most common examples of inherent powers are those emergency powers evoked by the president during crisis that may lead to shut of government or tearing apart of any part of Nigeria as an entity.
“In the case of sealing off Atiku’s PDP, I think Mr. president has acted according to the powers that the Constiution guarantees him. The duty to “faithfully execute” the laws is the source of power for President Goodluck Jonathan to order the sealing off of Atiku’s alternative PDP.
The Nigeria Constitution, notwithstanding, has the many roles of the President and his or her powers clearly spelt out. However, the Constitution is silent on the function of the president within a political party, today, through our political experiments through the 1999 till present, presidents have become the actual leaders of their parties. The president is his party chief and a superpolitican. No question about this. This does not mean that the president is by any means above political partisanship. “
“As a party leader, the president has to do anything to maintain his party’s integrity. The president may make known his disliking for anti-party’s activities such as those by Atiku and seven others and act accordingly to put things back in shape. He can try to discipline party members who fail to support presidential policies. President Goodluck Jonathan in his unassuming role has decided to employ these concepts in his style of leading his party, PDP.”
Scan-News learnt that leaders of the Atiku faction have slated a meeting for Abuja on Sunday to strategise on their next line of action.
Sources at the Presidency said that President Jonathan has vowed not to stop the EFCC from investigating the 7 governors who have several petitions against them. He was said to have told them pointedly that the EFCC has powers to carry out its functions according to law. The seven governors are said to be involved in the faction plead to be left off the hook.