News / Africa

    Nigeria Ruling Party Urges Defected Ex-VP to Return to Group

    Nigeria's former Vice President Atiku Abubakar (File Photo)
    Nigeria's former Vice President Atiku Abubakar (File Photo)
    Peter Clottey
    A spokesman for Nigeria’s People’s Democratic Party (PDP) has appealed to former Vice President Atiku Abubakar, a party stalwart, to return to the ruling party after his sudden defection to the main opposition, All Progressives Congress (APC).

    Abdullahi Jalo, however, denied that the PDP is in crisis following high-profile defections that include influential governors and legislators who announced they had joined the APC ahead of next year’s presidential, legislative and local elections.

    The PDP has won every national election since 1999 when Nigeria returned to constitutional governance following years of military rule.  Analysts say the defection of the former vice president could undermine the electoral dominance of the ruling PDP in next year’s vote.

    “We really want him to be with us and we are appealing to him to come back to our party so that at least we can move ahead. Because he has a lot of wealth of experience and then this is the time he could help the country,” said Jalo. “Whether he has an interest to contest or not, at least he cannot destroy the house he built, because almost all the elders and the founding fathers of the party are still with the PDP.”

    Citing a lack of internal democracy, impunity and the refusal of the party to address concerns that led to the defection of the governors and legislators, Abubakar announced his defection from the ruling PDP.

    “This is the first time that Atiku Abubakar is defecting from PDP to ACN [Action Congress of Nigeria] from ACN to PDP, and now from PDP to APC. We hope he will defect again from APC to PDP,” said Jalo. “Unfortunately, we are not comfortable with how he reacts to issues. We really sympathize with his decision, but people will begin to interpret it like he is jumping from one party, because he likes to become a president, which is unfortunate.”

    But, Abubakar denied he wants to be the presidential candidate of the main opposition APC, vowing to help the party to win the 2015 general election.

    Some observers say the defection of the former vice president could pave the way for more defections, contending that Abubakar, who is a financier of the PDP, enjoys significant support from the party’s “foot soldiers.”

    Jalo, however, says the PDP is implementing new measures to address its internal challenges in the run up to next year’s vote after Bamanga Tukur, former national chairman of the party, resigned. Alhaji Adamu Mu’azu is the new national chairman of the PDP.

    “The new chairman has come on board and visiting all those who are the brains behind the formation of the PDP. And wherever he goes, he will say be patient, please forgive us and let’s forge ahead. So that is the PDP of today,” said Jalo.

    Jalo also says the ruling party is still capable of winning the general election next year in spite of the high-profile defections.

    “It is the only party that embraces almost all the major tribes and smaller tribes and then they have come together to work together and that is what has made PDP to survive the 15 years ruling [the country],” said Jalo.
    Clottey interview with Abdullahi Jalo, Spokesman for PDP
    Clottey interview with Abdullahi Jalo, Spokesman for PDPi
    || 0:00:00
    ...    
     
    X

    You May Like

    Video Obama Remembers Fallen Troops for Memorial Day

    President urges Americans this holiday weekend to 'take a moment and offer a silent word of prayer or public word of thanks' to country's veterans

    Upsurge of Migratory Traffic Across Sahara From West to North Africa

    A report by the International Organization for Migration finds more than 60,000 migrants have transited through the Agadez region of Niger between February and April

    UN Blocks Access to Journalist Advocacy Group

    United Nations has rejected bid from nonprofit journalist advocacy group that wanted 'consultative status,' ranking that would have given them greater access to UN meetings

    This forum has been closed.
    Comment Sorting
    Comments
         
    by: muyiwa ekundayo from: lagos
    February 12, 2014 9:40 AM
    It's a shame really the calibre of characters that parade themselves as leaders in this country. Atiku is confused man,a man that cannot even control his home. If nigeria were to be china,most of these guys should have either been shot or serving life jail.

    by: kingsley from: abuja
    February 04, 2014 12:06 AM
    Atiku...lol I really sympathise with his decision making, maybe APC needs his money more than the PDP. Incase if he is still interested tell atiku am forming a party next election and obasanjo wants in...


    by: Abel Ogah from: OJU Nigeria
    February 03, 2014 6:05 PM
    Who told Jalo that Atiku cannot use his wealth of experience to help the country in his new found Love-APC?

    By the Numbers

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Chinese-Americans Heart Trump, Bucking National Trendi
    X
    May 27, 2016 5:57 AM
    A new study conducted by three Asian-American organizations shows there are three times as many Democrats as there are Republicans among Asian-American voters, and they favor Hillary Clinton over Donald Trump. But one group, called Chinese-Americans For Trump, is going against the tide and strongly supports the business tycoon. VOA’s Elizabeth Lee caught up with them at a Trump rally and reports from Anaheim, California.
    Video

    Video Chinese-Americans Heart Trump, Bucking National Trend

    A new study conducted by three Asian-American organizations shows there are three times as many Democrats as there are Republicans among Asian-American voters, and they favor Hillary Clinton over Donald Trump. But one group, called Chinese-Americans For Trump, is going against the tide and strongly supports the business tycoon. VOA’s Elizabeth Lee caught up with them at a Trump rally and reports from Anaheim, California.
    Video

    Video Reactions to Trump's Success Polarized Abroad

    What seemed impossible less than a year ago is now almost a certainty. New York real estate mogul Donald Trump has won the number of delegates needed to secure the Republican presidential nomination. The prospect has sparked as much controversy abroad as it has in the United States. Zlatica Hoke has more.
    Video

    Video Drawings by Children in Hiroshima Show Hope and Peace

    On Friday, President Barack Obama will visit Hiroshima, Japan, the first American president to do so while in office. In August 1945, the United States dropped an atomic bomb on the city to force Japan's surrender in World War II. Although their city lay in ruins, some Hiroshima schoolchildren drew pictures of hope and peace. The former students and their drawings are now part of a documentary called “Pictures from a Hiroshima Schoolyard.” VOA's Deborah Block has the story.
    Video

    Video Vietnamese Rapper Performs for Obama

    A prominent young Vietnamese artist told President Obama said she faced roadblocks as a woman rapper, and asked the president about government support for the arts. He asked her to rap, and he even offered to provide a base beat for her. Watch what happened.
    Video

    Video Roots Run Deep for Tunisia's Dwindling Jewish Community

    This week, hundreds of Jewish pilgrims are defying terrorist threats to celebrate an ancient religious festival on the Tunisian island of Djerba. The festivities cast a spotlight on North Africa's once-vibrant Jewish population that has all but died out in recent decades. Despite rising threats of militant Islam and the country's battered economy, one of the Arab world's last Jewish communities is staying put and nurturing a new generation. VOA’s Lisa Bryant reports.
    Video

    Video Meet Your New Co-Worker: The Robot

    Increasing numbers of robots are joining the workforce, as companies scale back and more processes become automated. The latest robots are flexible and collaborative, built to work alongside humans as opposed to replacing them. VOA’s Tina Trinh looks at the next generation of automated employees helping out their human colleagues.
    Video

    Video Wheelchair Technology in Tune With Times

    Technologies for the disabled, including wheelchair technology, are advancing just as quickly as everything else in the digital age. Two new advances in wheelchairs offer improved control and a more comfortable fit. VOA's George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Baby Boxes Offer Safe Haven for Unwanted Children

    No one knows exactly how many babies are abandoned worldwide each year. The statistic is a difficult one to determine because it is illegal in most places. Therefore unwanted babies are often hidden and left to die. But as Erika Celeste reports from Woodburn, Indiana, a new program hopes to make surrendering infants safer for everyone.
    Video

    Video California Celebration Showcases Local Wines, Balloons

    Communities in the U.S. often hold festivals to show what makes them special. In California, for example, farmers near Fresno celebrate their figs and those around Gilmore showcase their garlic. Mike O'Sullivan reports that the wine-producing region of Temecula offers local vintages in an annual festival where rides on hot-air balloons add to the excitement.
    Video

    Video US Elementary School Offers Living Science Lessons

    Zero is not a good score on a test at school. But Discovery Elementary is proud of its “net zero” rating. Net zero describes a building in which the amount of energy provided by on-site renewable sources equals the amount of energy the building uses. As Faiza Elmasry tells us, the innovative features in the building turn the school into a teaching tool, where kids can't help but learn about science and sustainability. Faith Lapidus narrates.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora