I can’t be intimidated, PDP won’t be defeated, says Jonathan

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President Goodluck Jonathan on Monday declared that neither he nor his party could be intimidated by the opposition.
He therefore urged members of his ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to stand firm on their convictions. A former national chairman of the party, Alhaji Ahmadu Ali, who expressed support for the Jonathan administration, attributed the recent spate of criticisms of the Nigerian government to the refusal of the administration to endorse same sex. The President, who made the declaration at the unveiling of the PDP’s Volunteer Scheme at the State House, Abuja, urged them to be proud of their party and stand in its defence at all times.
He also stated that no political party in the country is as formidable as the PDP, adding that the ruling party is simply unstoppable and would coast home to victory in the rescheduled general elections. Jonathan also decried what he called poor marketing of the PDP by its members, saying that besides its numerous achievements, only the ruling party could guarantee unity and peace of the country. Accordingly, he charged PDP stalwarts to work hard in marketing the party especially at the grassroots, especially using the media so that the elections would be a walk-over.
He said: “PDP is not just the largest party in Nigeria, but it is the only party that has members at all voting units; there is no other party whether two, three, four, five parties coming together, they cannot reach that level. “PDP has members in every voting unit in this country. And PDP has done well over this period. I’m happy that our states houses of Assembly, some of them are here, the local government chairmen of the party are also here. “PDP has done very well, but we have not been marketing the achievements of our party. Sometimes you see people that have done nothing coming to intimidate us.”
The president said further: “It is only in PDP states that things are working. If I compare the quality of Government Houses and Presidential Lodges, the ones in PDP states are better in quality, even state universities opened by PDP states are better, the PDP states are committed to education, but sometimes people come and say we have done nothing, and the intimidation is more to the extent that even in the states where we are more, where we even have PDP governors, they come to intimidate us, and we have to resolve that we cannot allow people who are not up to us to intimidate us.
“At the state level and at the national level. Well … at the national level we cannot compare our standards with theirs, because they have not had the experience and we will not give them the opportunity, but I know they will not do well.” He added: “PDP is the only party that brings about peace in this country. And I always say that when you see people talking and you see the bitterness in their hearts, you see the frustration, the anger, and you see them as people who are already feeling guilty. If you don’t have a forgiving heart, if you don’t have a clean heart you cannot rule Nigeria, because you cannot give out what you don’t have.
“We should all be proud of our party and we should not allow others to intimidate us. We must all collectively protect and defend the interest of our party.” According to Jonathan, the consistent attacks on his person and the party are a strategy by the opposition to destabilise him since he remained the first image bearer of the party and government.” Other speakers at the event including Professor Jerry Gana and Chief Tony Anenih, Chairman of BoT both of whom harped on the need to strengthen the party at all levels and for members to be team players.
The PDP Ward Scheme Volunteer is a campaign strategy targeted at the grassroots using about a million foot soldiers to be known as volunteers. In his address, Ali pointed out that the West has been angry with the Jonathan government because of Nigeria’s refusal to accept same-sex marriage. He insisted, however, that the country would stand by its decision no matter the odds because the practice runs contrary to African tradition and culture. Ali said: “People talk about security, this has been going on, it’s not the first time. Shehu Shagari had to deal with the Maitatsine riot in Kano.
“Now, what is happening is an international thing. The ISIS are all over the world. They are in Iran and Lebanon. This is a branch of them. You can see their flag. “It does not matter what our former partners feel because we passed the same-sex bill. We have culture we have tradition We have taken our decision and we will abide by it. Believe you me, the whole of Africa are looking up to us. Democracy is not a panacea for all cultures. Every culture has to interpret a bit of its own culture into it for it to be able to understand and work it.
“For us to think what is happening there must happen here is wrong. We must be able to nurture democracy from our own perspective and that is what we are doing. “We may fall and falter, they have been there for more than 200 years. They are still faltering.”

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