PDP shifts NEC meeting, new chairman to emerge next week

PDP Headquarters

Nigeria’s main opposition party, the Peoples Democratic Party, has again shifted the meetings of its national organs that would lead to the emergence of a new national chairman of the party to next week.

The party is currently enmeshed in crisis of leadership following an Abuja High court verdict that recently asked the acting national chairman, Uche Secondus, to step down and hand over to a former presidential aide, Ahmed Gulak or any other suitable replacement from the north east.

The court ruling was sequel to a suit instituted by Mr. Gulak asking the court to name him replacement for the former chairman, Adamu Muazu, who resigned shortly after leading the party to failure in the 2015 election.

Mr. Gulak had insisted that the northeast, where Mr. Muazu hailed from, should produce his replacement to complete his tenure.

Mr. Gulak had two weeks ago stormed the headquarters of the PDP in Abuja where he announced that he was assuming office as chairman following the court verdict.

However, governors elected under the platform of the party rejected the former presidential aide and asked the National Secretary, Adewale Oladipo, to act as chairman until a new head is selected by last week.

To that end, a meeting of all organs of the party was fixed for Tuesday in Gombe.

However, the inability of the northeast to agree on a consensus candidate among the retinue of contenders to the office led to the postponement of the meeting.

The National Working Committee of the party had issued a statement announcing that the meetings of the party’s caucus, Board of Trustees and National Executive Committee would hold Tuesday and Wednesday this week after which a new chairman would emerge.

However, it appears that factors that inhibited the Gombe meeting still reared their heads as leaders could not agree on a suitable replacement and other burning issues in the party.

The spokesperson of the PDP, Olisa Metuh, issued a statement late on Monday announcing that all the meetings scheduled for this week had been shifted to next week.

“In view of requests by critical stakeholders and leaders of our great party, the National Working Committee (NWC) has approved the shifting of the meetings of key statutory organs of the party earlier scheduled for this week to next week.

“In the new schedule, the meeting of the National Caucus of the party has been shifted to Monday, February 15th, 2016 at 7pm. In the same vein, the meeting of the Board of Trustees (BoT) will now hold on the morning of Tuesday, February 16th while the National Executive Committee (NEC) meeting will hold at 2pm on the same Tuesday, February 16th, 2016,” Mr. Metuh said.

A divided house?

Sources in the party informed PREMIUM TIMES that most of the organs of the party as well as the governors have their own preferred candidates and all are sticking to their guns.

Among the major contenders for chairman apart from Mr. Gulak, included another former presidential aide, Rufai Alkali; a former Minister of state for power, Mohammed Wakil; a former national vice chairman of the party, Wilberforce Juta and the immediate past Minister of the FCT, Bala Mohammed.

Others include the Deputy National Publicity Secretary, Adullahi Jalo and Paul Wampana a party stalwart from Adamawa state.


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