2023: Disparity Amongst PDP Stalwarts Hits Harder As North, South Lock Horns Over Zoning

2023: Disparity Amongst PDP Stalwarts Hits Harder As North, South Lock Horns Over Zoning

  • The stakes are high at the moment as the opposition party, PDP, seems to be stuck in limbo over the selection of a presidential candidate
  • Over the years, the party has resorted to adopting the zoning policy as stipulated in the party’s constitution but some of the party members (northern PDP) are insistent on a new approach
  • However, the southern delegates of the party said the party cannot dismiss its long age tradition because of some clever and selfish ambition of an individual

The quest for who will be the flag bearer of the Peoples Democratic Party at the 2023 presidential elections looks uncertain at present as persistent disparities amongst the north and south party big wigs continues to surface.

It is believed that since the formation of the party in 1998, the party have resorted to adopting the zoning method to nominate who will be flying the flag of the party after the penultimate election (primaries).

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Saraki, Tambuwal, Bala, 2023 Election, PDP, APC
The trio of Saraki, Tambuwal, and Bala has vehemently proposed the adoption of consensus candidature. Photo Credit: (Bukola Saraki)
Source: Twitter

Emerging reports have confirmed that some of the party big wigs (mostly in the north) have reached a resolution to drop the long age tradition of zoning thereby proposing a consensus candidacy which many believe is an attempt to field a northern candidate.

It will be recalled that prior to the current state of the event, the PDP had fielded a northern candidate (Atiku Abubakar) in the previous presidential election. However, according to the stipulations of the party, it is the turn of the south to field a candidate.

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According to Punch newspaper, a meeting amongst the party big wigs on Wednesday, April 6 ended in a heated argument with different opinions over whether to adopt the zoning policy or go with the northern proposed consensus candidature.

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Legit.ng gathered that during the meeting as reported by Punch, the argument by the northern delegates was based on the premise that leadership has been enjoyed by the south more than the north.

They argued that ex-President Olusegun Obasanjo and ex-President Goodluck Jonathan stayed in power for a combined 14years (8years and 6years respectively).

While still making references, the northern delegates gave a comparison that the northern block had only stayed in power for 11years (if President Muhammadu Buhari completes his 8years summed up with the administration of the late Umar Musa Yar’adua who spent 2years in power before his demise).

Southern PDP insistent on zoning

However, after the close of the meeting, numerous reports have it that the party resorted to throwing the presidential primaries open to all regions, a claim that Chief Bode George a PDP stalwart dismissed.

Bode George, who is a member of the zoning committee refuted the claims stating that the national executive committee of the party will stage a meeting to proffer a final solution to the dilemma within the party.

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He however reiterated that the stipulations of the party since its inception have always been for the zoning policy in the selection of its flag bearer.

He said:

“Zoning is sacrosanct and I can confirm to you that the committee in its report did not throw the ticket open. Observations were made as well as recommendations and they will be forwarded to the National Executive Committee for a final decision.

He however noted that opinions making rounds over consensus candidature are clever attempts by some persons who were swayed by their personal ambitions.

George said dismissing the zoning policy will be unfair to the southern region stating that the region has never opposed the mandate of the north when it was their turn.

2023: Fayose, play down consensus talks

Similarly, the former governor of Ekiti state, Ayodele Fayose has ruled out the possibility of a consensus system of selection.

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Fayose in an interview with Seun Okinbaloye of Channels Television’s ‘Politics Today’ programme stated that his hopes were dashed during the previous presidential election because of the zoning system.

He said in a build-up to the 2019 presidential elections, he was intimated that it was the turn of the north and he had no choice but to step aside.

He said:

“The last presidential primary in Port Harcourt was a northern affair. All the aspirants were from the North. So, when you talk about my not contesting the last time, I was told it was going to be a northern affair and that is why you had Saraki, Atiku, Tambuwal and all of them. There was no southerner.”

2023: Consensus candidacy best for PDP’s unity, says Saraki

Meanwhile, former president of the Senate, Dr Bukola Saraki, has said all PDP presidential hopefuls from the north are working for a consensus candidate to foster desired unity in the country.

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2023: Shock as prominent Igbo PDP chieftain rejects zoning to southeast

Saraki disclosed this in Delta state on Monday, April 4, when he led other aspirants, on a consultative visit to Governor Ifeanyi Okowa at Government House, Asaba.

The delegation included Governor Aminu Tambuwal of Sokoto, Bala Mohammed of Bauchi, and former Managing Director of FSB International Bank Plc, Alhaji Mohammad Hayatu-Deen.

Source: Legit.ng

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