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The National Chairman, Peoples Democratic Party, Alhaji Bamanga Tukur, on Tuesday pleaded with the members of the New PDP to come back to enable the ruling party to present a united voice at the proposed national dialogue conference.

Tukur in a statement on Tuesday also described those opposed to the national conference as hypocrites.

He said, “I appeal to members of the PDP to align with the President on the national confab agenda. I also appeal to our aggrieved members to return to the PDP for us to forge a common endeavour towards rebuilding the party and our country in particular.

“For this reason, I will not shy away from begging our party members to come together so we can enter the national confab like a team and set examples for the rest of Nigeria.

“In doing that, we would have demonstrated that we remain the most serious party, not only in Nigeria, but in Africa.”

The PDP chairman also said that the party would mobilise Nigerians to participate in the national conference so that suggestions from it could represent the yearnings of all Nigerians.

He expressed the hope that Nigeria would derive gains from the national conference.

Tukur, however, said that those opposed to the conference should praise President Goodluck Jonathan for deeming it fit to plan the conference rather than castigating him.

It said it was also astonished because those criticising the committee had advocated it on several occasions.

Tukur, said the idea of national dialogue was in line with the Triple ‘D’ agenda of the party.

He listed the triple “Ds” as Dialogue, Defence and Diplomacy.

President Goodluck Jonathan had on Monday inaugurated a 13-man National Advisory Committee on the conference and charged them to produce a blue print and procedures for the convocation of the conference.

The committee is headed by Senator Femi Okunroumu.

Instead of criticising the President, Tukur said he (President Jonathan) deserved praise and encouragement.

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Tukur, who described those who condemned the idea as hypocrites, argued that most of them had several times advocated the convocation of a national conference.

He added, “The PDP would savour every means to make the conference produce a good result for the country. The President deserves our support.”

The chairman said the PDP was excited by the government’s desire to bring all ethnic nationalities in the country to a roundtable to discuss the progress and future of the country.

He said President Jonathan deserves kudos for bringing the issue of national conference to the front burner, having responded positively to the yearnings of Nigerians. He said the PDP would mobilise Nigerians from all walks of life including the opposition groups for the success of the national confab, which according to him, offers a life time opportunity for Nigerians to re-lay the foundation of the country to make it emerge as the true giant of Africa.

Tukur appealed to members of PDP to align with the President on the matter, and also called on the aggrieved members of the party to return to the PDP to enable the party to forge a common endeavour towards rebuilding “ our party and our country in particular.”

He added, “Yes, we seem to be at the crossroads in PDP and that is normal in democracy. However, what is not normal is if we resolved to permanently stand apart with little regards to our memorable starting line, past efforts in building the party as well as our common aspirations in raising PDP to be the most formidable among all.

“Let me reiterate that I am not the cause of the crisis in our party as the National Chairman.”

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