- There are indications that all is not well within the PDP ahead of the party's presidential primary for the 2023 general elections
- Some southern chieftains within the party are reportedly pushing for some frontline presidential aspirants to be disqualified
- Some northern chieftains of the party, have, however, pushed back on the plan, saying it is a case of a political witchhunt
FCT, Abuja - A report by The Nation newspaper indicates that confusion broke out at the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) national caucus meeting on Monday night, March 14 forcing the party's national chairman, Dr Iyorcha Ayu to abruptly reschedule proceedings.
According to the report, the uproar at the meeting was triggered by the insistence of some leaders from the south that members, who defected from the party to the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the past and returned, should be excluded from seeking the 2023 presidential ticket.
A vocal governor from the south, according to sources, spearheaded the call.
Former vice president; Atiku Abubakar, former Senate President Bukola Saraki; former Kano state governor Rabiu Kwankwaso, and Sokoto state governor, Aminu Tambuwal are among prominent PDP chieftains that defected to the APC in the run-up to the 2015 general election.
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However, they all returned to PDP before 2019, while some won and lost elections on the platform of the PDP.
They are all believed to be eyeing the party’s presidential ticket.
Those canvassing the exclusion of former defectors argued that their defection to APC was the major reason PDP lost power in 2015. They were said to have argued that the PDP found itself in the opposition today because of their past actions.
Another source said when the disagreement degenerated, Dr. Ayu brought the meeting to a close.
Wike, Obaseki rift worries PDP, as party leaders intervene
Meanwhile, Vanguard newspaper reports that the recent war of words between Governor Godwin Obaseki of Edo and his Rivers state counterpart, Nyesom Wike, forced the PDP, to shift its National Executive Committee, NEC, meeting from Tuesday, March 15 to today, Wednesday, March 16.
According to the report, a day difference in date of NEC is to enable party leaders, stakeholders, and national caucus to take advantage of the postponement to intervene in the matter, with a view to calming the nerves of the aggrieved governors and their supporters.
2023: PDP more united, cohesive than ever, says Governor Ifeanyi Okowa
On his part, Governor Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta state on Monday, March 14 said the PDP had never been stronger, cohesive, and more united than now.
Okowa said that if PDP faithful avoided acts that could cause distraction, the party would win massively in the 2023 general elections.
He made the remarks at the swearing-in of his senior political adviser and three special advisers at Government House, Asaba.
2023: Northern Professionals Forum asks Okowa to contest as president
In a related development, a group operating under the aegis of the Northern Professionals Forum (NPF) has called on Governor Okowa to contest for the presidency in 2023.
The forum in a statement sent to Legit.ng on Thursday, February 10 said they have taken cognisance of the Delta governor's track record of infrastructural and socio-economic development of his state, adding that he can replicate same at the national level.
The body which is comprised of professionals from diverse fields noted that governance cannot be left in hands of those who least understand what infrastructural, human capital, and socio-economic development was all about in the guise of politics.