THE Governor Bala Mohammed-led Peoples Democratic Party Committee on the Review of the 2019 General Elections, has recommended that the party should throw open the contest for its 2023 Presidential ticket. This was part of recommendations made by the committee in its report submitted to the party leadership in Abuja, on Wednesday.
Chairman of the committee, Governor Bala Mohammed, while presenting the report said, “In line with certain unwritten conventions of the nation’s history, many people think that for fairness and equity, the North-East and South-East geo-political zones that have had the shortest stints at the Presidency should be given special consideration in choosing the presidential flag bearer of the party for the 2023 elections.
“While we admit that this is a strong argument, we should not lose sight of the fact that Nigeria is endowed with many capable and very experienced leaders in every part of the country.
“Moreover, the exigencies of the moment demand that nothing should be compromised in choosing the leader with the attributes to disentangle the country from the present quagmire.
“Therefore, we think that every Nigerian from every part of the country should be given the opportunity to choose the best candidate through a credible primary election as a way of institutionalising a merit-based leadership recruitment process for the country.”
Mohammed, who recalled the recent youth-driven #EndSars movement and the effect it would have on future elections said, “Cognisant of the generational and gender shifts all over the globe and the emergence of a new generation of Nigerians who are not held down by religion, ethnicity or such other primordial considerations but who are determined to mainstream the country into global best practices, the party should set aside a certain percentage of elective and appointive offices for the youth and women.”
According to him, the #EndSars movement was a clear testimony that a new generation of young, bold, ambitious and detribalised Nigerians have taken centre-stage and that their legitimate clamour for inclusion and good governance can only be ignored to the peril of the party and indeed Nigeria.
The committee also urged the party to “promote internal democracy, discourage ‘god-fatherism’ and ensure that the will of the people prevail in the choice of candidates to run for electoral positions.
“The party should advocate for genuine restructuring that fosters decentralisation, engenders national unity, guarantees security of lives and properties of all Nigerians no matter where they reside in the country and which promotes economic prosperity and the overall well-being of all our people.”
While receiving the report, National Chairman, Uche Secondus, said the party would set up an implementation committee.
Secondus said, “Relying on the recommendations of this report, the NWC will work with think tank, consultants and all critical stakeholders of our great party to enhance the new PDP narratives that will help address the yawning absence of leadership in the country. We will continue to build the party along the line of the recommendations with a view to cultivating a wide support base with utmost urgency towards 2023.
“I have no doubt in my mind that your report will form the bedrock of our party’s plan ahead of the 2023 general elections. The NWC is going to study and analyze your report meticulously and come up with a position that will be beneficial to the party.
“But we need to warn that the only thing keeping this country alive today is the fact that APC will be history by 2023. They are aware of this reality and they are trying to use their usual propaganda to create a different image of themselves but Nigeria knows better and cannot be fooled again.”