PDP CRISIS: Patience Jonathan Battles Rebel Governors
PDP women leaders loyal to the seven aggrieved governors of the party may be in for a rough time.
There are indications that the First Lady, Dame Patience Jonathan, may get them removed from plum positions for alleged disloyalty.
Sources said that already an evaluation of leaders of the various women organisations within the party has commenced nationwide.
The exercise, The Nation learnt, also involves the positions of women leaders and their deputies in all the states and local government areas of the country.
The idea is to scrutinise all women in leadership positions within the party and its various arms, groups and agencies with a view to establishing where their loyalty lies in view of the festering power tussle within the party.
A party source said the instruction from “above” is that the exercise should be taken very seriously as the presidency is interested in the outcome.
“The instruction is that the office of the party’s Women Leader should evaluate the women in positions of leadership within the party nationwide and determine their allegiance in view of the ongoing crises within our party.
“The screening exercise is on and we are making progress. The modality is to first get in all the names of who is who in our women organisations.
“That is what we are still doing now. After that, we will examine their political affiliations and determine their loyalties.
“It is after that we will know what next. For now, I cannot tell you more than that,” the source said.
However, loyalists of the new PDP leaders are alleging that the exercise is plot to ensure that all women leaders perceived to be loyal to the new PDP are screened out from their positions on flimsy excuses.
A woman leader in Ogun State, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said she has already been contacted from Abuja and told of the ongoing exercise.
According to her, the idea allegedly emanated from the office of the First Lady.
“We are already aware of what is going on and we are prepared to face them.
“Instructions were sent down to us during the week to compile names of all women officers within the party and the local governments in our state.
“We have done that and sent the result to them. But we hear they want to remove some people perceived to be loyal to the new PDP leaders. I don’t know how true this is but it is all over the place,” our source, a former local government boss, said.
It was learnt that the move became necessary following rumours that some women leaders within the party were planning to publicly declare their support for the new PDP.
Indications that there may actually be some truth in the rumours emerged last weekend when some prominent PDP women leaders from the north called on the warring factions within the party to sheath their swords and allow peace to reign in the interest of the masses.
The women appealed to the Bamanga Tukur-led executive of the party to accommodate dissenting opinions and embrace the G7 governors as partners in progress.
“The position of these women didn’t go down well with the first lady. She feels it is wrong for them to feign neutrality in a matter between the president and some aggrieved governors.
“This is why the need to sanitise the women wing of the party became important. The fear of the people up there is that if the women are allowed to be making unguarded statements in their capacity as PDP women leaders, it will not augur well for the party.
“The plan now is to remove all those capable of allowing themselves to be used by the opposition should be removed from leadership positions and replaced by loyalists of the Bamanga Tukur PDP,” the source said.
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