Nigeria’s main opposition party, the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, may hold its national convention in the second quarter of this year where new national officers of the party will be elected.
The party is currently factionalised with two former governors claiming leadership of the party.
While former Borno State governor, Ali Sheriff, was declared the authentic chairman of the party by a Court of Appeal panel sitting in Port Harcourt, Rivers State, former Kaduna State governor, Ahmed Makarfi insist he remains chairman pending the outcome of the appeal filed against the judgment.
Indications that the party would hold its convention before the end of second quarter emerged Monday as part of the resolutions contained in a communiqué issued at the end of a meeting held in Abuja by the party’s standing committee on reconciliation headed by the Bayelsa State governor, Seriake Dickson.
The meeting which reviewed recent developments in the party resolved, among others, to hold a unity convention in the second quarter of 2017 as it also proposed a political solution to the lingering crisis within the party which had curtailed its effectiveness as the main opposition party to the governing All Progressives Party, APC.
“As part of this process, it is imperative that an early convention within the second quarter of 2017 should be held in Abuja which therefore should be all inclusive and where new national officials will freely, fairly and transparently elected”, the communiqué said.
The communiqué also said that without prejudice to the ongoing judicial processes, it aligned with the resolution of the meeting between former President Goodluck Jonathan and the PDP governors as a logical step towards resolving all outstanding disagreements within the party.
The communiqué which was signed by Mr. Dickson; the Vice Chairman of the Reconciliation Committee and former Deputy Senate President, Ibrahim Mantu; and the secretary, Joshua Lidani, also noted that in furtherance of its fresh initiative, the reconciliation committee shall embark on extensive consultations with all relevant individuals with a view of building confidence and necessary consensus toward the unity convention.
The committee appealed to all party leaders and members to exercise restraint and focus on the loyalty to and the overall interest of the party.