The Governor of Borno State, Kashim Shettima, has debunked reports quoting him as saying the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, should be abolished in Nigeria, stating that he was quoted out of context.
The reports which went viral last week claimed that Shettima, while in Makurdi Benue State, said the PDP should be obliterated.
But the Special Adviser on Communications and Strategy to the governor, Isa Gusau, said the governor was not reported in the proper context as he “neither wishes an end of the PDP nor does he support a one party State that is unhelpful to any meaningful democracy.”
The statement issued to journalists, “The Governor’s remarks in Benue was in the context of security challenges the country has been bedeviled with. Naturally, thoughts of the Boko Haram insurgency that has led to the deaths of 100,000 citizens and destructions of Government and private property worth six billion dollars in Borno alone came to his mind.
“Revelations about alleged diversion of funds meant for procurement of arms to prosecute the Boko Haram crisis would hardly stay off the mind of any Governor that has suffered as much as Shettima has within the last five years. Added to this was the fact that throughout the last five years, Borno received a paltry sum of N200m from the previous administration despite its huge expenditures that include massive support for Federal armed forces deployed to Borno.
“It is only expected that a party, under whose occupation, these happened, would not escape being mentioned by Governor of a State that is victim of improper handling of the situation.
“The Governor assures those with genuine concerns that he fully supports multi-party democracy as he has demonstrated in Borno State within the last five years as Governor.
“Governor Kashim Shettima is educated enough to know that the Nigerian constitution does not have room for a political party that has on its platform, sitting Governors, Senators and members of House of Representatives to be abolished by any individual or institution. In the last five years, key leaders of the PDP in Borno State can attest to the fact that from 2003 to date, Shettima has been the most tolerant of the opposition in Borno State.
“He respects and openly relates with the opposition as everyone can attest. He also knows and respects the fact he has network of friends in the PDP with whom he shares brotherly ties. As someone chosen by his humble colleagues to chair the Northern Governors Forum, Shettima recognizes and respects the fact that there are Governors in some of the 19 Northern States who are of the PDP and he has excellent relationship with them. He could never have meant that the PDP should be proscribed.”