The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has washed its hand off its members currently facing prosecution for perpetrating fuel subsidy scams and other crimes.
A top official of the PDP said the party did not encourage its members who are criminal suspects or those already convicted of crimes to abuse their various offices.
Speaking with reporters at the PDP’s national headquarters in Abuja on Thursday, Sam Jaja, the party’s national deputy chairman, said the party had no plans to rally to the aid of any members currently facing trial for involvement in any crime.
He specifically stated that the party would allow Mahmud Tukur and Nasir Ali, sons of the party’s national chairman, Bamanga Tukur, and a former national chairman, Ahmadu Ali, respectively, to bear their own crosses.
“On the issue of some PDP members being involved in oil subsidy, these are individuals,” said Mr. Jaja, adding, “Everybody will bear his own cross.”
Mr. Jaja also asserted that “there are governors who are now facing prosecution as a result of their actions and inactions, so is not a party thing.
“PDP did not send anybody to go and misbehave. Even if you mention my chairman’s son, he is up to age. Assuming he is to go to jail, they will not come and jail the national chairman, because he did not send him.”
The Presidency and the PDP as well as influential members of other political parties have come under critical searchlight in the aftermath of the government’s announcement of the first batch of suspects to be prosecuted for alleged involvement in oil subsidy scams. SaharaReporters has exposed a plan by President Goodluck Jonathan and Attorney General Bello Adoke to turn the fuel subsidy scam trials into a charade.
Several sources disclosed to us that Mr. Jonathan wants to use the so-called fuel subsidy scam to achieve two goals. “The president is under pressure from the US and the EU to show a tougher stance towards corruption. That explains the prosecution,” said one source. He added, “But the president cannot afford to alienate fuel marketers who funneled millions of dollars stolen from the subsidy to his campaign and other funds. That’s why the suspects closest to the president will all be let off the hook at the end of the day.”
However, Mr. Jaja denied that the party would help any suspect. Speaking about Mr. Tukur’s son, Mr. Jaja said, “He is a man of age and he has a household, he has his family. Everybody will account for his own position.”