2019: Northern PDP Leaders Vow To Present A Candidate That’ll Defeat Buhari


LAGOS OCTOBER 11TH (NEWSRANGERS)-Northern leaders and stakeholders in the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) have assured that an acceptable candidate who can conveniently defeat President Muhammadu Buhari will be presented for the presidential election in 2019.
They insisted that the zoning arrangement agreed upon in the sharing of offices at the May 21, 2016 national convention of the party remains sacrosanct.
The leaders, who held an expanded meeting at the Ajuji Hotel, Abuja, insisted that nothing will change the zoning of the presidential ticket of the party to the North, while the chairmanship seat zoned to the South remains the way it was agreed upon.
But the Northern leaders warned the South to put its house in order and present an acceptable candidate for the position of the national chairman, who will be voted for at the convention.
They insisted that the PDP is not participating in the 2019 election for fun, but wishes to win, and therefore, expects the Southern PDP stakeholders to present a tested and highly experienced person for the position of the PDP chairman who will lead the party to victory at the poll.
According to them, the Northern PDP members have the population to substantially decide who becomes the party chairman, and will use its votes in doing so, if an unacceptable person is put forward by the South as its consensus candidate while a more qualified person is contesting the election but get pushed aside by the unwholesome interest of persons who wish to control the party for selfish reasons.
They promised to ensure that an acceptable candidate who will be brought forward will be a president for Nigeria and not a Northern president as the people are complaining about President Muhammadu Buhari who is being accused of sectionalism.
The Northern leaders also came down hard on Governor Ayodele Fayose of Ekiti over his declaration for the presidency in violation of the party’s zoning arrangement.
He was said to be making “useless noise” as he goes around campaigning for the presidential ticket of the PDP.
Professor Jerry Gana, convener of the meeting, while welcoming delegates from the North-East, North-West and North-Central, tasked the party to elect the best candidates in accordance with the zoning formula of the party.
According to him, the recent declaration of a presidential ambition by Ekiti State Governor Ayodele Fayose should be dismissed, adding that the party’s position on the presidency in 2019 is sacrosanct.
“I want to appeal to you to give to the party the very best in the positions that have been zoned to us. Let us, therefore, give to the party, men and women of impeccable integrity.
“Whatever the Fayoses of this world may be doing, the party has resolved that the presidential candidate will come from one of the three zones in the North,” said Gana in his opening remarks.
On his part, Ahmed Makarfi, Chairman, PDP National Caretaker Committee, lauded the sacrifice of delegates to the meeting, saying the fact that they paid their way to Abuja, took care of their accommodation and feeding, is a pointer to their unflinching loyalty to the PDP project.
On the zoning of the presidency to the North, Makarfi reiterated the commitment of the party to honour the agreement, stressing that those bent on indicating interest in elective positions should not be barred from doing so provided that the zoning formula is respected.
“The Port Harcourt convention remains valid and one of the decisions taken at that convention was zoning. Micro zoning does not have binding effect.
“If a position is zoned to the North and you are from the North and you come to buy form, we will sell to you,” he said, even as he reminded party members not to forget that “people will not get tired of taking the PDP to court.”
The chairman further called for unity without which the party will find it difficult to stage a comeback to power in 2019.
On the progress made so far in the reconciliation efforts by the party, Makarfi said the entire machinery of Labour Party in Osun State has resolved to join the PDP in a matter of days.
In the same vein, Walid Jubrin, Chairman, Board of Trustees of the PDP, charged all party members to show respect for the zoning arrangement as agreed on by all organs of the party at the May 21 convention of the party in Port Harcourt.
He advised all zones in the North to come together and look inward with a view to agreeing on who to push forward for the exalted position.
While pointing out that the North is blessed with so many capable politicians, Jubrin added, “We must be able to take a decision that will be acceptable to the North and the country”.
For Ahmadu Ali, ex-national chairman of the PDP, the way forward for the party is a united front where “mini meetings” if they should hold “must get the approval of the national chairman.”
Apparently worried by the show of interest in the national chairmanship by other geopolitical zones, Ali called on the North to support the South West’s aspiration without fear or favour.
He said: “Let us stop these mini meetings. Any of such meetings must get the approval of the national chairman.
“We must be ready to ensure that at the convention, the main issue, which is the national chairmanship of the party, is well handled. If we don’t vote the South West, we can as well forget the PDP.”
Taking a slightly different position on Fayose’s presidential declaration, former acting national chairman of the party, Bello Haliru, called for sanctions, noting that zoning and rotation of offices have always been given a pride of place in the affairs of the party.
“Zoning and rotation are part of the PDP constitution. We must adhere to them if we are to keep this party alive.
“There are people who are bent on contesting whether the office is zoned to their place or not. We must discuss with the South, so that anybody who goes against zoning can be punished. We cannot afford to have people come to the convention and make a fool of themselves and ridicule the party,” he said.
Also speaking at the meeting, former Senate President Iyorchia Ayu said the PDP must put an end to impunity and dictatorship as preparations for the convention intensify, even as he urged the party to leverage its presence at the grassroots to return to power in 2019.
“The PDP is a party that was formed to fight dictatorship; it’s an anti-dictatorship party. Let’s stop imposing candidates and allow them to emerge through electoral democracy or through consensus.
“We have representation in all the 774 local government areas in the country. If we mobilise them, we will return to power,” Ayu said.
He also admonished the South West to ensure that the best candidate who has the wherewithal to lead the party to victory is presented for election as the PDP chairman.
According to him, the PDP is interested in winning election in 2019 and therefore demand a capable and tested hand as the PDP chairman, someone who has the “liver” to challenge the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), and not get distracted.
He noted that the North may be forced to pick a candidate and vote for such candidate at the convention should the Southern leaders put forward a candidate that is known to be incapable of leading the party effectively.

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Posted by on Oct 11 2017. Filed under State. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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