• Opposition can’t intimidate APC, says Adams Oshiomhole
• Groups urge n-PDP, r-APC to embrace dialogue
The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) National Executive Committee (NEC) will today meet in Abuja to review issues arising from the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) it signed with 38 other political parties two weeks ago.
The Guardian gathered from the party’s National Working Committee (NWC) that the meeting would allow NEC to authorise the setting up of machineries leading to harmonisation of the ideas and suggestions that have been generated since the pact was signed.
A harmonisation committee is to be set up at the NEC meeting to help strengthen all agreements regarding the negotiations that had been undertaken by coalition partners so far. An NWC member confirmed that although some of the coalition partners have canvassed name change, no decision has been taken.
The NEC meeting is to be preceded by meetings of the PDP national caucus and board of trustees, which would give party leadership wider opportunity to deliberate on the thorny issues before a final decision is taken by NEC.
When the MoU was signed between the PDP and 38 political parties to present a single presidential candidate for the 2019 presidential election, they also resolved to commence work on a blueprint manifesto, which would serve as a covenant with Nigerians.
As the move to unseat All Progressives Congress (APC) administration gets stronger, a coalition of the ruling party’s support groups has urged aggrieved members of the New Peoples Democratic Party (n-PDP) and the Reformed All Progressives Congress (r-APC) to give the Adams Oshiomhole-led NWC a chance to address their grievances.
The n-PDP and r-APC that are breaking away from the APC are among the political groups forming an alliance to defeat the ruling party in 2019 general elections.
The chairman of the APC support group, Dr. Lawal Mohammed Munir, who briefed reporters in Abuja, said he was at a loss on why some influential APC members or the splinter group would be bent on undermining the interests of the party.
“We are compelled to ask: what do they really want? Unless we are mistaken, we know that they have the positions of speaker of the House of Representatives, Senate president, governors of Sokoto, Kwara, Benue and Plateau states. All the previous governors involved are serving senators. We are also aware that some of them produced some members of the present national executives of the party,” Munir said.
He expressed confidence in the Oshiomhole-led NWC to resolve the crisis, adding that the division in the APC should not be seen as unusual, it is in line with the tenets of democracy.
Meanwhile, Oshiomhole, has said the party could not be intimidated by the PDP.
At the party’s headquarters in Abuja on Saturday night, while receiving the report of the Osun State governorship primary election, Oshiomhole said the PDP’s rigging machine had been destroyed.
The former Edo State governor, who dismissed report of threat by the PDP that it may boycott next year’s general elections as a non-issue, said the opposition party was being haunted by its past misdeeds of treating electoral contest as a do-or-die affair.
Oshiomhole expressed happiness over the successful use of direct voting method in the Osun governorship primary election.
He said any of the aspirants not satisfied with the outcome should present such complaint before a three-man appeal panel that will begin sitting today.
Chairman of the primary election committee and governor of Zamfara State, Abdulaziz Yari, said the winner, Alhaji Gboyega Oyetola, polled 127,017 to pick the ticket.
Yari, who recommended direct primaries to other states and political parties based on the success recorded in Osun, said apart from being cost effective, the method also served the purpose of mobilising party faithful for election.