About 19 of the 36 state governors in Nigeria may boycott the meeting the Nigeria Governors Forum, NGF, convened by the self-acclaimed chairman of the Forum, Jonah Jang. The meeting is scheduled for Abuja on Monday by 6:00 p.m.
The 19 governors are those who voted for Rivers State Governor, Chibuike Amaechi, in the May 24 election of the Forum. Mr. Jang and his has rejected Mr. Amaechi’s victory at the poll.
Both Messrs Jang and Amaechi are members of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, which has 23 members in the Forum.
The governors that may shun today’s meeting include those of the Action Congress of Nigeria, ACN: Babatunde Fashola, Lagos; Abiola Ajimobi, Oyo; Kayode Fayemi, Ekiti; Ibikunle Amosun, Ogun; Rauf Aregbesola, Osun; and Adams Oshiomhole, Edo.
The others are the governors elected on the platform of All Nigeria Peoples Party, ANPP, namely Ibrahim Geidam, Yobe; Kashim Shettima, Borno and Abdulaziz Yari of Zamfara, who is also the deputy chairman of the Amaechi-led faction.
Rochas Okorocha of Imo State, who was elected on the platform of the All Progressives Grand Alliance, APGA, but has since dissolved into the yet to be registered All Progressives Congress; as well as the lone Congress for Progressive Change, CPC, governor, Tanko Al-Makura, might also boycott the meeting.
Some PDP governors that may shun the meeting include Sule Lamido of Jigawa Sate, Musa Kwankwaso of Kano State, Murtala Nyako of Adamawa State, Aliyu Wamakko of Sokoto State, and Babangida Aliyu of Niger State who is also the chairman of the troubled Northern States Governors Forum, NSGF.
Both Messrs Wamakko and Nyako have publicly pledged loyalty to Mr. Amaechi and also declared that they will not recognize Mr. Jang as Chairman.
Mr. Jang convened the meeting to discuss the lingering disagreement over the Excess Crude Account and Federation Account. The State Commissioners of Finance had last week walked out of a meeting convened by the Federal Ministry of Finance, which informed the convening of the NGF meeting by Mr. Jang.
However, Mr. Amaechi condemned the plan to hold the meeting. The Rivers State governor said as the authentic chairman of NGF, he did not summon the governors to any meeting and accused Mr. Jang of impersonating him.
But Mr. Jang, in response, insisted that the meeting will hold after which the governors would meet with President Goodluck Jonathan at the Aso Rock Villa by 9 p.m.
Those that may attend the meeting include Isa Yuguda, Bauchi; Olusegun Mimiko, Ondo; Gabriel Suswam, Benue; Garba Umar, Taraba; Ibrahim Shema, Katsina; Saidu Dakingari, Kebbi; Godswill Akpabio, Akwa Ibom; Liyel Imoke, Cross River; Emmanuel Uduaghan, Delta; Theodore Orji, Abia; Peter Obi, Anambra; Martins Elechi, Ebonyi, Sullivan Chime, Enugu; Seriake Dickson, Bayelsa; Ibrahim Dankwambo, Gombe; and Murktar Yero of Kaduna State.
The meeting, which is scheduled for 6p.m. at the faction’s secretariat in the Maitama District of Abuja, provides the first test of influence between the two factions.
The Jang’s faction had early this month opened the secretariat insisting that it was not proper to hold the meeting in any of the governors’ lodges.