Former President Goodluck Jonathan delivers a speech on February 19, 2015, in Lagos (AFP Photo/Pius Utomi Ekpei)

Jubilation about support for the Senator Ali Modu Sheriff faction of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) by former President Goodluck Jonathan appeared premature, as the party’s National Leader on Tuesday distanced himself from speculations that he has endorsed the side led by the former Borno State Governor.

Following a visit to Jonathan by Sheriff and some of his supporters on Monday, media reports suggested that the former president had endorsed him as PDP national chairman. But in statement by a media aide to Jonathan, Mr. Ikechukwu Eze, the meeting with Sheriff had nothing to do with endorsing him, as it was part of moves by the former president to ensure the return of peace to the party.

According to Eze, “Jonathan as a former president and foremost leader of the party welcomed Sheriff and some of his supporters to his house, in line with a mediation role he is playing towards unifying and strengthening the PDP.

“Indeed, it may interest you to know that after meeting with Sheriff, the former president also met with Senator Ahmed Makarfi, leader of the PDP caretaker committee, and the party’s board of trustees chairman, Senator Walid Jubril, later in the evening.

“As a peace-loving leader of the party, the former president’s interest is to help reposition PDP to enable it play a constructive role in the affairs of the nation, in view of the imperative of deepening the nation’s democracy.

“I wish to let those spinning this falsehood know that it just doesn’t add up to fly a contrived banner of endorsement in one breath, and in another, concede that the former president explained his commitment in meeting with different interest groups, towards resolving the differences in the party.”

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