From Ndubuisi Orji, Abuja
Ahead of the 2023 general elections, the Igbo Leadership Development Foundation (ILDF) has charged the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) its policy of rotating its presidential ticket between the North and South.
The group at a press briefing in Abuja on Thursday, jointly addressed by Godwin Udibe, Onyebuchi Obeta and Law Mefor, Chairman, National Secretary and Director, Public Affairs, respectively, insisted that it is the turn of the South-East to produce the PDP presidential candidate in 2023.
It rejected the report of the PDP 2019 Election Review Committee, headed by Bauchi Governor, Bala Mohammed, which recommended that the contest for the opposition party’s 2023 presidential ticket should be thrown open to aspirant from all parts of the country.
The group, which equally called on the All Progressives Congress (APC) to zone its presidential ticket to the South-East, warned that there would be consequences for any political party that ignore calls for a South-East presidency in 2023.
‘We therefore believe that this panel’s report, contradicted itself and threw both caution and constitution of the PDP into the gutter by recommending that PDP presidential ticket be open to all Nigerians, and an all-comers affair.
‘For the avoidance of doubt, permit us to quote the PDP constitutional provision on zoning. The rotation and zoning principle was engrained into the PDP party’s Constitution in 2009. Article 7 (2) (c) of the PDP Constitution states: ‘In pursuance of the principle of equity, justice and fairness, the party shall adhere to the policy of rotation and zoning of party and public elective offices, and it shall be enforced by the appropriate executive committee at all levels’.
‘So, in line with this express provision of the PDP constitution, since power has resided in the North for two straight terms it has to move South, specifically to South-East, in the spirit of rotation and zoning, which has been the practice since 1999.
‘All the political parties ought to flow with this national understanding. PDP, APC, and other major parties cannot be moving North when power is supposed to be moving South, if they hold the unity and continued corporate existence of this country dear to heart,’ the group stated.