As PDP presidential aspirants intensify efforts to secure the party’s ticket ahead of the 2019 general elections, Gombe governor Ibrahim Dankwambo on Monday visited Kaduna to solicit the support of the party’s delegates in the North-west zone.
Mr Dankwambo, who announced his desire to challenge for the nation’s top job at the weekend, met with the zone’s statutory delegates and urged them to support his bid for the party’s ticket.
Describing himself as a “serious contender”, Mr Dankwambo said that the North-West Zone was his first port of call because it was “very crucial to success in the presidential race”.
“There are more than 18 million voters in the northwest geopolitical zone. No serious presidential contender can toy with such mass of voters.
“The zone also has a large number of delegates for the PDP primaries,” he noted, adding that its votes would determine who would fly the PDP ticket in 2019.
The governor urged the delegates to vote for him during the primary elections, saying that he had the popularity to win the secondary elections.
He urged the delegates to prevail on qualified Nigerians to acquire the Permanent Voter Cards(PVC) to enable them vote in the 2019 general polls which he said were “very important” to Nigeria and Nigerians.
Mr Dankwambo urged the delegates to constantly remind PDP supporters of the August deadline for the PVC given by INEC, noting that the PVC was a major instrument that would determine the nation’s direction.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the Zonal Vice Chairman of the PDP, Ibrahim Kazaure; the party’s National Secretary, Umar Tsauri; state chairpersons and Secretaries of the party in Kaduna, Kano, Jigawa, Zamfara, Kebbi, Sokoto and Katsina attended the event.
Dankwambo’s rivals for the PDP presidential ticket include former Kaduna Governor Ahmed Makarfi, former Vice President Atiku Abubakar, Senate President Bukola Saraki and Sokoto Governor Aminu Tambuwal.
Others include two former governors of Kano State – Rabiu Kwankwaso and Ibrahim Shekarau, former Sokoto Governor Attahiu Bafarawa, among others.
Also in Kaduna, the state chapter of the PDP on Monday received Suleiman Hunkuyi and his supporters in Kaduna.
Mr Hunkuyi, who represents Kaduna North in the Senate, was among the 13 APC senators who recently defected to the PDP and other political parties.
Mr Hunkuyi was received by the State Chairman of the PDP, Felix Hyet, and other executive members of the party at the Trade Fair Complex, Kaduna.
Mr Hyet urged them to work with the party to take power from the APC in the state come 2019.
He claimed Mr Hunkuyi brought APC to power in the state.
”I believe he has realised his mistake and would work hard towards correcting that by helping to send him (the governor) packing from Sir Kashim Ibrahim House,”Hyet said.
Mr Hunkuyi who arrived the venue of the event with other defectors was received by a crowd of supporters.
He said that PDP is fully back, rebranded and ready to take over power from the ruling party.
However, he claimed he made an error bringing Mr el-Rufai on board in 2015. He begged for forgiveness over the role he played in bringing the APC to power in Kaduna.
“We came to join hands with our friends to liberate our state from the bondage of APC in Kaduna State.
“Let’s join hands with our great party PDP and change things.
The immediate past Governor of the state, Ramalan Yero , and Muhammad Bello who are both seeking the party’s ticket for the governorship seat, were among those who attended the event.
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