President Goodluck Jonathan; President of the Senate, David Mark; and a former Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party, Ahmadu Ali, on Tuesday lashed out at a former Minister of Information, Mr. Labaran Maku, for dumping the PDP for the All Progressives Grand Alliance.
While Jonathan described Maku’s action as anti-party, Mark said the former minister was a liar while Ali described him as an ingrate.
They spoke at the Lafia Township Stadium during the PDP presidential rally.
Jonathan said there was no truth in the former minister’s claim that he (the President) encouraged him to join APGA.
The President said he could not be involved in anti-party activities.
Jonathan said he did not at any time have any discussion with him. He said he did not encourage Maku to join another party.
He said the PDP did not encourage anti-party activities and he, as the leader, would never flout the party’s rules and regulations.
Mark, on his part, said Maku had to apologise and retrace his steps before he could be accepted back to the party.
“Don’t be deceived by any son of yours that says he has been put in another party to run for the governorship. Mr. President is the PDP from top to bottom,” he said.
The Senate President said the North Central was solidly behind the President and would vote for him because he had brought democratic dividends to bear on the region.
Ali also described Maku as an ingrate, saying that despite using the platform of the party to rise to stardom, he jumped the ship because of greed.
He said the President had never asked anybody to join any party to canvass votes for him. He said Maku’s intention was to smear the image of Jonathan and portray him as a religious bigot.
He accused Maku of dropping the name of the President in his bid to realise his ambition, which he insisted would never happen because he lacked the required integrity.
Ali said Maku’s people now treat him with disdain because he did not portray leadership qualities.
Also at the rally, Jonathan said the person that would succeed him would be younger than him.
The President said that he was close to 60 years, adding that a younger person would succeed.
“Obasanjo was president at 70, Yar’Adua at 60 and me, close to 60. So, the next president must be younger than I,” Jonathan said.