PDP’s zoning of presidency to North on course

Ali-Modu-Sheriff-1• A’ Ibom gov heads new panel.
• Another rainbow coalition in the offing
The plan by the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) to reinvent itself may have taken off with indications yesterday that it was not going back on its desire to put a northerner in Aso Villa come 2019.

The information is coming amid strong indications that an ad-mixture of politicians of different backgrounds are mooting the idea of another rainbow party to wrest power from the All Progressives Congress (APC) and equally prevent the PDP from returning to power.
Meanwhile, the National chairman of the PDP, Senator Ali Modu Sheriff, has named a zoning committee headed by a southerner as a clear indication that the presidential slot come 2019, will go to the north.

On the new rainbow coalition, which is said to include bigwigs from the PDP and APC, it was learnt that many, who are disgruntled for being sidelined in the APC, and others who do not see any future for the ‘decimated’ PDP are said to be making informal contacts “aimed at putting together a party bigger than the PDP and the APC.”

No one was willing to be put on record for the plan, but many denied that it had anything to do with a mega party.
“The only thing mega about them is in the name, but what is upcoming is greater than that, and as the months unfold, Nigerians will see it play out,” an involved party said.

Other sources said that the doors of the party in the making will be left open and made encompassing to accept those, not of the APC and PDP, willing to join.

None of the sources said anything concrete about registration with the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) amid other suggestions that an already registered party may be adopted.

There is however caution that should the PDP and APC resolve internal anger among its rank and file before the whistle is blown for political activities to commence, the coalition may not have the caliber of bigwigs it envisages.

“But from what is going on, you can be sure there will be alignments and re-alignments of political forces so there is no way, the marriages of convenience and inconvenience, will not lead to what is being put together,” one politician volunteered yesterday.

Also yesterday, the PDP began moves to put its house in order with a statement from its spokesman, Chief Olisa Metuh, that in line with the decision of the National Executive Committee (NEC) the National Chairman, Modu-Sheriff has constituted the four special committees in preparation of the PDP National Convention and the overall rebuilding and repositioning of the party.

The statement reads further: “The committees, which are to be inaugurated on Tuesday April 5, 2016 are the National Convention Committee, Reconciliation Committee, Zoning Committee and the Finance Committee.

“The National Convention Committee has Rivers State governor Nyesom Wike as Chairman, Taraba State governor Dairus Ishiaku as Deputy Chairman and the Governor of Ebonyi State, Governor Dave Umahi as Secretary.

“Similarly, the Reconciliation Committee has Bayelsa State governor Seriake Dickson as Chairman and Senator Ibrahim Mantu as Deputy Chairman while the Finance Committee has Gombe State governor Ibrahim Dankwambo as Chairman and Senator Godswill Akpabio as Deputy Chairman.

“In the same vein, the Zoning Committee has Akwa-Ibom State governor Emmanuel Udom as Chairman and Kelechi Igwe, a lawyer as Secretary.

“The committees will be inaugurated by the National Chairman of the party, in a ceremony on Tuesday, April 5, 2016 at the national secretariat of the party at 2pm prompt.”

The composition of the committee on zoning, it was gathered, is intended to drive the recommendation of the Senator Ike Ekweremadu-led committee last year that the position of President be zoned to the north if the party is to stand a chance in the 2019 general elections.



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