From Ron Jacob, Jos
Dr. Ayuba Gufwen, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) candidate in the just concluded Local Government polls in Mangu, Plateau State has declared that he is still in Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
“I have not resigned my membership with the PDP as being insinuated. I am still an active and strong member of the party,’’ Gufwen told everday.ng in an interview on Friday in Jos.
Gufwen, who contested the council’s chairmanship in the last LG polls and claimed to have won but was allegedly denied, had last week announced his self-suspension from the party following an alleged derogatory statement made against him by some party officials.
“My decision is based on unsavory discriminatory and divisive comment of my person by ranking members of our party…the state leadership and campaign directorate of Gubernatorial candidate during the selection process of our running mate, ’’ he said.
He explained that his action was not “for the purpose of defecting to any party rather it is a personal protest against any form of discrimination of people living with disability.’’
The PDP stalwart said, “it’s unfortunate that many had mistaken my statements for complete withdrawal of my membership from the PDP.’’
Gufwen described such insinuations as “very wrong’’ and “unfortunate.’’
“All I wanted to achieve with that statement was to let the leadership of the party know that I was not happy with such comments made against me.
“So it wasn’t about the position of running mate to our PDP Governorship candidate, Gen Jeremiah Useni, but the aspersions cast against me, ’’ he asserted.
He further said, “even if I am the deputy governor and such a comment was (made) against any person living with disability, I won’t take it likely. So it’s not about the running mate selection.’’
The politician who is also a philanthropist, disclosed that his decision to take a posture of “sit-down-look’’ has yielded positive results as “we are now in an intensive and positive discussions with the national leadership of our party, PDP.’’
“I am happy that the leadership of the party has reasoned with me and we are discussing and getting on so well. PDP is my party and I will ever remain a member in view of the massive support I got from my people each time I contest for any elective position, ’’ he said.
However, Gufwen and supporters of the PDP did boycott the rerun election conducted by the Plateau State Independent Electoral Commission (PLASIEC), to get a definite winner for the Mangu Local Government chairmanship seat on Thursday, Oct. 18.
Mr Fabian Ntung, PLASIEC chairman, had ordered for a re-run in Fomulam polling unit in Kerang District and Kantoma polling unit in Mangu Halle District, after declaring that Oct. 10 LG elections held there were inconclusive.
The Commission had declared the ruling APC winning 11 local government chairmanship seats out of the 13 LGAs that took part in the polls excluding Jos North, Jos South, Riyom and Barkin Ladi.
In the end PLASIEC declared the APC winner in both Mangu and Langtang North as winners.