Kinsmen of former President Goodluck Jonathan on Tuesday insisted that Jonathan and his wife, Patience, were working against candidates of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) in the forthcoming elections in Bayelsa State.
The kinsmen under the auspices of the Ogbia Renaissance (OR) said the recent report in the Nation was a vindication of their earlier position that the former president was in a surreptitious plot to subvert his own political party for selfish considerations.
The Chairman, OR, Mr Obhioru Mitanoni, said Jonathan, his wife, A.J Turner and other PDP chieftains were committing brazen anti party activities ahead of the forthcoming legislative elections in the state.
“The recent report in the Nation Newspaper òf January 6, only vindicated the Ogbia Renaissance which alleged in an earlier statement that Jonathan was secretly sponsoring candidates of other parties, the All Progressives Congress (APC, Accord Party and the African Democratic Congress (ADC) against those of his party in Bayelsa”, Mitanoni said in a statement.
Mitanoni said that the action of the former President was what pitched him against the state Governor, Seriake Dickson, and top leaders of the PDP in the state.
He explained that Jonathan was backing a former Chief of Staff, Samuel Ogboku, of the APC for House of Representatives and Senator Nimi Amange who defected to the ADC to contest the Bayelsa East senatorial election.
He said the former President opted to support candidates of other parties because his candidates in the PDP failed to win the last party’s primaries.
Mitanoni said it was sad that the former President took the display of political pettiness to a disgusting low unbefitting of his status as a former President of the country and national leader of the PDP.
He said Jonathan was acting against his status by venturing into the fray of deciding who became the councilor, local government chairman, house of Assembly member, in his native Ogbia in a shocking departure from the standard norm.
Mitanoni said rather than playing the role of a statesman at the national and international level, like Obasanjo and Abdusalami, Jonathan would rather opt to demonstrate his lack of capacity for inclusive leadership which had tied his followers across Nigeria, the Niger Delta and Ogbia to regrets and lamentations.
He said that it was rather regrettable that Jonathan was backing candidates of other party’s through his wife and King AJ Turner while pretending not to know the anti-party activities of his minions.
He called on the Chairman of the PDP, Prince Uche Secondus, to take urgent steps to avert an impending disaster threatening the electoral fortunes of the PDP in the next election.
According to him, Jonathan was backing Cleric Awudum, (Accord Party) against the PDP Candidate, Munaleyefa Gibson, in Ogbia Constituency 2; Gabriel Ogbara of ADC against the PDP candidate Naomi Ogoli for Constituency 3 and the House of Representatives in Ogbia, Samuel Ogbuku (APC) a former Chief of Staff to former Governor Timipre Sylva, against Fred Obua thé PDP candidate.
He said it was even shocking that one of the PDP candidates being frustrated and rejected by Jonathan for another party’s candidate is a younger brother to his late Chief Security Office (CSO), Gordon Obua.
He alleged further that with the withdrawal of incumbent Senator Ben Bruce of the Bayelsa East Senatorial Zone (Jonathan’s Senatorial District), in honour of a subsisting zoning arrangement, Jonathan and King AJ Turner were surreptitiously supporting Nimi Amange Barigha of ADC, against the PDP Candidate, Chief Blessing Ipigansi Izagara.
According to him, the only offence of Izagara, a longtime friend of Jonathan and Turner, was his perceived loyalty and closeness to Governor Dickson.
He said that the former President opted to pitch their tent with Barigha who defected to the ADC when their preferred candidate, a female associate of AJ Turner lost the senatorial ticket to Izagara.
He said: “Jonathan, his wife Patience and A.J Turner’s brand of petty, self-centered brand of politics in Ogbia is a mockery and cruel slap on the enviable track record of late Senator Melford Okilo and other notable founding fathers and leaders in Ogbia land who fought hard to raise the profile of the Ogbia Kingdom.
“Their selfish brand of politics has left Ogbia completely desolate, abandoned and rudderless. Ogbia that was once the pride and envy of the old Rivers State and Niger Delta is now a land begging for attention with the bulk of her people feeding from the crumbs that has fallen off the dining table of some self-glorifying leaders with no sense of mission.”
Mitanoni said that Jonathan and his cohorts were deliberately undermining the governor because of a non-existent struggle to raise a successor for him in 2020.
He lamented that Jonathan refused to step into the shoes of a leader in spite of his privileged status.
He said that Jonathan and his men built Almajiri schools running into billions of Naira in the North while he turned a blind eye to the burning issue of the development of the Niger Delta.
He stressed that the Bayelsa axis of the East West Road was a testimony to the neglect Jonathan unleashed on the Niger Delta.
He stressed further that even the various developmental projects in his native Ogbia were traceable to the efforts of Governor Dickson.
But the media aide to the ex-President, Ikechukwu Eze, in his recent statement said it was untrue that his boss was engaged in anti-party activities.
He said: “It is manifestly dishonest, deceitful and preposterous for anybody to suggest that former President Dr. Goodluck Ebele Jonathan is working against the interest of the party under which he rose to occupy the highest office in the land.
“As one of the leaders of the party, having served as President under the Peoples Democratic Party, it is obvious that Dr. Jonathan has continued and will continue to work for the success of PDP across the nation.
“He is also a father figure and a statesman whose door is open to all Nigerians desirous of visiting or consulting him on sundry matters, including politics.
”Even then he has always given his support and blessing to his party’s candidates in all elections.
“Those who also push the narrative of a war between him and Bayelsa State Governor, Seriake Dickson are either adept at conjuring up a rift where there is none or are lovers of mischief who do not have the interest of Bayelsa State at heart.
”It is instructive to note that those behind this misleading claim always draw blank when challenged to either provide evidence of such disagreement or cite any instance of former President Jonathan making negative comments against the Governor, either in private or public.