From Ndubuisi Orji, Abuja
Thirty six national ex-officio members of the People Democratic Party (PDP) drawn from across the country, yesterday, appealed to aggrieved members to bury their hatchets in the overall interest of the opposition party ahead of the 2023 general election.
The ex-officio members, who are also members of the PDP National Executive Committee (NEC), said the crisis rocking the party was unnecessary at this period of electioneering.
Chairman of the Forum of National Ex-officio members, Yunana Iliya, who spoke on behalf of the party leaders, at at press briefing, yesterday, in Abuja, said they are alarmed at the effect of the party crisis on members across the country and in the Diaspora.
He said “As our great party approaches the 2023 general elections, we have been confronted with very disturbing and destabilising scenarios playing out in our party against the plea by our presidential candidate, H.E Atiku Abubakar that admonished us to be very careful in our utterances, our posturing and body language in presenting to the public the internal issues of our party.
“The aggravating circumstances being thrown up by conflicting accusation and counter – accusation of who is right and who is wrong, a matter which the Forum of National Ex-officios feels is not necessary at this electioneering period. It is our considered view that the driving force of PDP members from Ward to National level is how best to win the elections in 2023 to rescue, rebuild and reposition Nigeria.
“We are greatly alarmed by the effect of all these controversies on the moral of the generality of our teeming supporters across the length and breath of Nigeria and the diaspora. We have therefore, resolved to appeal to all party members, especially those who have expressed contrary views and opinions to please sheath their sword and join hands in ensuring the victory of our party in the forthcoming general elections.
“The National Ex-officios Forum reiterate our support for the resolution of 97th NEC meeting, the purpose of which was to present the party as one united family going forward. We implore all our leaders and members who have one issue or the other to avail themselves of internal differences resolution mechanism as provided for in our party constitution.
“Finally, we reaffirm our loyalty and commitment to our party in its determined resolve to win 2023 general elections at all levels to restore Nigeria to its pride of place.”
The PDP has been embroiled in crisis since the nomination of Delta State governor, Ifeanyi Okowa, as the party’s vice presidential candidate.
The crisis has pitched Governors Wike, Samuel Ortom, Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, Okezie Ikpeazu, and Seyi Makinde of Rivers, Benue, Enugu, Abia and Oyo states, against Atiku and Ayu. The five governors, as well as other aggrieved members of the PDP have continued to insist on the replacement of the national chairman with a Southerner, as condition for peace.