Despite President Goodluck Jonathan’s denial that he signed a one term agreement with Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) governors, the controversy has refused to go away.
Niger State Governor Babangida Aliyu, who broke the news of the pact, said yesterday that it was moral to stick to an agreement.
Aliyu is a member of the group of seven (G7) PDP governors and the Kawu Baraje-led PDP faction, who are insisting that President Jonathan must not run in 2015.
Other governors in the group are Sule Lamido (Jigawa), Aliyu Wamakko (Sokoto), Rabiu Kwankwaso (Kano), Murtala Nyako (Adamawa) AbdulFatah Ahmed (Kwara) and Chibuike Amaechi (Rivers).
Receiving the Brigade Commander, 31 Field Artillery Brigade, Nigerian Army, Major-General Hassan Abayomi Salihu, in his office in Minna, said the crisis in the PDP “is about democracy and morality”.
He said: “The whole essence is about democracy and morality. Democracy may not necessarily flourish. Morality means that if you make an agreement – whether privately or publicly – we must learn to keep it.”
He reiterated that the G7 governors and other leaders in the Baraje group are interested in building a democratic culture in politicians “to the extent that their words will always be their bond”.
On the party’s crisis, the governor said: “The PDP has the capacity to resolve whatever differences we have; we must not allow people who are outside the party to get so enmeshed in the problem that is not their own and in the process kill that which we want to build.
“I need to draw your attention to this because I have been reading a lot of articles that they planted to create more animosity and anarchy that will make reconciliation difficult.
“What is happening is an internal affair of the PDP because I am beginning to see a sign as if some people don’t want reconciliation to take place through the type of articles they are planting in newspapers’.
“Those (G7 governors) who are involved in the crisis are mature enough to know when to hold and when to go.”
Aliyu praised the military for growing to become one of the most educated groups in the country and challenged parents to make the education of their children top priority.
He stressed the need for military training for all adult civilians and called for the extension of the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) programme to 18 months, with the last six months devoted to military training.