‘Why We Elected Ali Modu-Sheriff As PDP National Chairman’ – Olisa Metuh
National Publicity Secretary of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Olisa Metuh, has cleared the air on the emergence of Ali Modu-Sheriff as the new chairman of the party.
Speaking on Tuesday morning to AIT/Ray Power news and current affairs programme, Political Platform, Metuh said the decision was in the best interest of the party going forward and that its constitution wasn’t flouted in the process.
Former governor of Borno state, Modu-Sheriff, a week ago, emerged as the national chairman of the former ruling party to the consternation of many party faithfuls who considered the move a shot in the foot for a party in dire need of reform.
The controversial Modu-Sheriff has been strongly linked with the dreaded Boko Haram terrorists group and wasn’t even among the five men recommended by the North-East caucus who were tasked with producing the next chairman.
However, Metuh dismissed allegations of a hijack and claimed the committee’s terms of reference changed.
“We decided to extend our search,” he said. “Modu-Sheriff has contacts within and outside the state that could be useful to the party.”
“Has it occurred to you that he (Modu-Sheriff) was twice elected governor?” he queried. “Has it occurred to you that he was twice elected to the National a$$embly? Has it occurred to you that he has great influence within his state and the North East that could be to our benefit?”
Responding to suggestions that his emergence as chairman was due to the size of his pocket, the Anambra-born lawyer said: “If we wanted somebody with money we would have gone for (Aliko) Dangote. Why must everything be reduced to naira and Kobo for Nigerians?” he asked rhetorically.
On the question of PDP always looking to political decampees to head them considering past chairmen Vincent Ogbulafor and Dr. Okwesilaza Nwodo cross-carpeted, and now Modu-Sheriff, Metuh said it was because of the party’s democratic disposition.
“It’s because we are a democratic institution and that everyone is welcome and treated equally in our party irrespective of where they’re coming from.”