BY EMMANUEL AZIKEN, POLITICAL EDITOR & HENRY UMORU
…He dosen’t know what he is saying — PDM…
The battle of legitimacy within the Peoples Democratic Movement, PDM, continued yesterday, after Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Chief Tony Anenih, disowned the newly registered political party.
Anenih in a statement, dismissed the registration of the PDM as a mischievous deviation from the original aspirations of the original PDM which he said remained committed to supporting a second term for President Goodluck Jonathan.
The new party in a sharp reaction said Anenih’s claim was a confirmation of its suspicion that he had been the big masquerade behind recent attempts to rubbish the image of the new party in the media.
Anenih in a statement entitled, “Our PDM is not a Political Party”, said the movement remained an integral part of PDP and would not be distracted from its original inclinations.
Chief Tony Anenih
The statement by Anenih read thus: “Reports about the registration of Peoples Democratic Movement, PDM, as a political party by the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, have inundated the polity; and because of my leading role in the formation and nurturing of the Movement, concerned members of the Movement have contacted me to confirm if it was our PDM that has witnessed the transformation.
“After in-depth investigations and extensive consultations with a wide spectrum of the membership and leadership of the PDM, which is just like a pressure group within the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, I consider it moral to use this medium to clarify that the PDM, which some persons, purporting to be interim leaders, secretly and mischievously promoted and succeeded in registering with INEC to operate as a political party, is not our PDM that worked with other political associations to form the PDP in 1998.
“For the avoidance of doubt, the PDM, which we collectively envisioned under the leadership of the late General Shehu Musa Yar’Adua, remains an integral part of the PDP, whose Board of Trustees, I currently chair by the grace of God and the consensus of founding fathers and leaders of our great party.
“I hereby wish to urge those who look up to me for guidance in this circumstance to remain steadfast with me in the task of building a much more united and formidable PDP and to discountenance the registration and treat it as a political trickery which will not survive the test of time.
“Members of the Peoples Democratic Movement, which is working for the unity and success of the PDP and the Federal Government under the able leadership of President Goodluck Ebele Joanthan should not panic. They should, instead, see it as an attempt to undercut our PDM, which was never intended to be and should not be a registered political party within and against the PDP.”
The PDM in a sharp reaction articulated by Alaba Yusuf, Media Advisor to the national chairman of the new party, said: “The masquarade behind the anti-PDM propaganda has been unmasked. Chief Anenih’s statement is a positive advertisement for PDM and what it stands for. There’s no turning back the hand of time. PDM is an idea which time has come. We are not going to waste our time exchanging words with those who want to live in the past. Let the Chief resolve the crisis tearing his party apart before dabbling into the affairs of another party over which he has no control.”