The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) caucus in the House of Reps, has resolved to meet with President Goodluck Jonathan with a view to finding a lasting solution to the crisis.
The caucus at its closed door meeting said the meeting must be held in the next few days, but did not suggest a date for the interaction.
PDP has 208 members in the chamber, a clear majority. There have been rumours of possible decamping of over 40 members to APC. Recently, 57 members of the chamber placed an advertorial declaring loyalty to the Kawu Baraje led faction, which has joined the APC.
No member has however, informed the House in writing as required by the law , of intention to decamp from the PDP to APC.
Revealing the outcome of yesterday’s caucus meeting , a member of the caucus said the lawmakers resolved to interface with the President to know their fate in the unfolding development in the party.
According to him ” we resolved to engage the President to know where the party is going “. He said the caucus agreed to remain together despite the challenge posed by the departure of some governors to the rival APC. ”
The PDP lawmaker said the caucus rejected the use of representative in its relationship with the President, explaining that the decision was based on the fact that no fruitful results had been realized from such interface in the past.
Rep. Bethel Amadi (PDP,Imo) who is currently the President of Pan African Parliament interfaces between the House and the Presidency in PDP matters. But the lawmaker said ” all of us agreed that we do not have to rely on anybody , we want to meet him and extract an assurance on what we stand to benefit in remaining in the party.
He continued “We are going to see Mr President and tell him how we feel and how we intend to serve our father land without involving our members in whatever is happening outside the House. ”
“Most of us are adults and we all know that not all the members are with the governors but they can’t just disobey them. ”
Another source who also insisted that he wants to remain anonymous stated that “those who are parading themselves as our representative at the Presidential Villa were not selfless people. ”
“We have collectively agreed to deal with Mr President collectively. ”
Meanwhile,the House said yesterday that despite the defection of the five nPDP governors to the opposition APC, nothing would change in its leadership as no member has so far communicated to the leadership of his intention to move.
Briefing journalists yesterday, Deputy Spokesman of the House Rep Victor Afam Ogene (APGA, Anambra) said until such a time when members formally declare their intention, the House remains the way it is.
He said Section 68 (1) of the Nigeria 1999 constitution as amended provides that members can only defect to another political party in group base on merger agreement but that what is happening in the PDP cannot be defined as such.
“In politics, things like this happen, but as a House, we remain one. Section 68 (1) (g) of the 1999 constitution as amended says people cannot cross carpet in group except in merger situation. But defection has to do with individual member, so if they’re defecting, the proper thing must be done by activating that section of the constitution.
“As at now, we’re not aware of any member defecting to another party. Remember, going by our rule, until a party has 181 members, you can’t talk of having the majority,”.