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2023: PDP Playing With Fire on Its Rescue and Rebuild Mission

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By Lugard Izoukumor

In the wake of a new political wave in Nigeria, different statistics suggest that, Labour Presidential candidate; Peter Obi’s movement is bigger than EndSARS. While, the Guardian UK, describes: EndSARS as a decentralised social movement, and series of mass protests against police brutality in Nigeria.

It further explained that the slogan calls for the disbanding of the Special Anti-Robbery Squad, a notorious unit of the Nigerian Police with a long record of abuse on Nigerian citizens.

The Peter Obi movement; on the other hand, whom many myself inclusive thought, was just another Arab spring, had been gaining momentum in States such as Kastsina, Kaduna, Edo, Lagos, Benue, etc.

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However, with a careful observation of the recent developments in the PDP indicates that, the Party is practically not ready for its rescue and rebuild mission, not by policy ideas pointing to the fundamental of governance, but with disunity amongst its leaders, pre-and-post the presidential primary, as well as the Cold War rocking the Party towards the selection of the Party’s running mate; Govenor Ifeanyi A. Okowa.

The 2023 politics isn’t a game, but could be described as an outbursts by some aggrieved leaders in the PDP, and they are treating it as one. At a time when everything in Nigeria is so strained, I can’t help thinking that some governors and a ex-governor only adds to the growing cynicism about the Party’s legitimate chance of taking another shot in the villa since its last shot was in 2015.

And at a time; indeed, leaders of the Party must do everything to produce responsible leadership in 2023, this cross-party manipulation may apparently work against it chances if things are not done imminently. But setting that aside, I have a larger and more practical concern.

One, for strategic politicking the commitment of former President Goodluck Jonathan on the affairs of the PDP, practically should be a concern. GEJ who is the first sub-Saharan African leader to serve on the board of ECAM, will be central to the fortunes of PDP and the victory of the Party in the 2023 general elections, ECAM; European Corporate Council on Africa and the Middle East, is a non-partisan, non-profit council: Mission driven, which is designed to promote authoritative and intellectual exchanges across borders, cultures and languages. The focus of the fora is to pursue constructive analysis and examination of the complex challenges facing the Middle East and Africa today.

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Two, 59-year-old; Governor Ezenwo Nyesom Wike who was the 1st runner-up of the PDP presidential primary quietness could be ascertained as a threat to the Party’s chances in 2023 with regard to unexpected political developments.

First, Wike and others were betrayed when the PDP undermined justice and equity, for the presidency to be zoned to the South, they rather threw the contest of the presidency open, as a contravention to “Section 3(c) of the PDP Constitution that provides for a rotational Presidency.”

“Section 3(c) provides that the Party shall pursue its aims & objectives by “adhering to the policy of the rotation & zoning of Party & Public elective offices in pursuance of the principle of equity, justice and fairness.”

Secondly, Wike was betrayed by Governor Aminu Tambuwal of Sokoto State, juxtaposing how Wike threw everything he had behind the aspiration of Tambuwal in 2019.

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But when it came to the most critical moment in his political career, Tambuwal remembered that he must “minimise rancour and jostling for power” whereby stepping down and doing that on the convention ground in a dramatic way, when he announced: “…I have appealed to my supporters to take this in good stride and for national unity and patriotism – not only that, those who are delegates here – should vote for Alhaji Atiku Abubakar.”

And perhaps, Wike felt cheated again when the national working committee (NWC) of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) had reportedly endorsed him as the vice-presidential candidate, yet Atiku settled for Okowa. Premium Times, however, allegedly quoted former Ekiti State Governor Ayo Fayose that Atiku had promised Wike for the vice-presidential slot.

Although, I think it is the prerogative of the candidate to pick his running mate. In any case like Wike, Okowa also is eminently qualified and will therefore add value to the ticket due to his versed knowledge in governance, rich resume in politics and impeccable capacity.

Finally, my concern is that PDP chieftains must lower their temperatures, Wike is angry and every reasonable politician will be vexing. His anger is justifiable as one of the pillars of the Party, he was promised to be the vice-presidential candidate with no correspondence to him on change of plans.

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Key point: Atiku, Okowa must do everything to pacify Wike, make GEJ a central plan for electoral fortunes: It is also not a misplaced idea to open a window of chats with Obi and Kwankwaso and build unity of purpose amongst Party members to demonstrate readiness for the rescue and rebuild recovery plan of Nigeria.

Above all, the PDP should celebrate that it has a person like Wike in its fold, not to disparage him.

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Daily Report Nigeria

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