As the controversy started by last week’s revelation that President Goodluck Jonathan had signed an agreement with some state governors to spend just a single term of four years in office begins to heat up the polity, a new political group has emerged to “set itself apart from the fray of merger and needless sundry confrontation, would fashion a new path to Nigeria’s glory”.
The group, which started with 37 members has grown to include about 200 political heavyweights such as Dr Orji Uzor Kalu, former Abia State Governor who is the head of the group, Senator Gbemisola Saraki, who is the vice chairman of the group, Basorun Akin Osuntokun, the secretary; a former Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, Nuhu Ribadu; one time minister, Odein Ajumogobia, SAN; a former Deputy National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Chief Olabode George; Ambassador Fati Abubakar; Nigeria’s former High Commissioner to Ghana, Ambassador Musiliu Obanikoro; a former Minister of Aviation in the administration of former President Olusegun Obasanjo, Chief Femi Fani-Kayode; and Chris Uche, SAN.
Though the group is yet to come up with a formal name, it has reportedly been holding meetings and consultations as a non-partisan political organisation with the aim of instituting good governance in the country. Five formal meetings of the group have been held while “a plethora of consultations are going on across the six geo-political zones of the country”, a source based in the Federal Capital Territory, FCT, Abuja said.
Its last meeting, held on Wednesday, 20th February at a house in Maitama, Abuja saw scores of politicians in attendance.
A member of the group told this correspondent that the main focus of the group is unity.
“At a time that Nigeria’s centenary is here, we need to first of all ensure that we are united as a people before politics comes in”, the member said.
“The way the country is going”, he continued, “gives cause for concern because we can only play politics when there is peace and unity”.
Already, the group has put committees in place to ensure a synergy of purpose.
Some of the committees include Mobilisation, chaired by Fani-Kayode, with Senator Grace Bent as deputy; the Finance Committee, chaired by Fafa Dan Princewill; Media, chaired Senator Emmanuel Onwe, with Prof. Mahmud Jega as vice chairman; while Nuhu Ribaud heads the Committee on Strategy and Research.
Some other members of the group include Lawal Shuaibu; human rights activist, Uba Sani; Senator Umar Argungu; Olusegun Awolowo; and Hon. Uche Ekwunife.