By Henry Umoru
ABUJA â€” THE Chairman Congress Committee of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) for Anambra state, Governor Gabriel Suswan, said yesterday that the party was in serious shambles in the state, just as he stressed that something was politically wrong with the PDP stakeholders in the state.
He said, however, that his committee recorded 90% success during the exercise, just as he stressed that he hired 200 buses to send out the result sheets as well as monitor the election in the 326 wards in the state where three delegates were each elected.
Suswan, who noted the crisis among party stakeholders in the state urged the partyâ€™s National Working Committee (NWC) led by National Chairman, Prince Vincent Ogbulafor, to, as a matter of urgency, nip in the bid the crisis in the state if it must clinch the governorship position in the February 6, 2010 governorship election.
â€œI have given them my advice and that is to say that I told them there is the need for the NWC to call all the major stakeholders in Anambra state, who are members of the PDP to sit down and discuss.Â In a situation where you have 30 members of the State House of Assembly from PDP and the Governor is from another party, means there is something fundamentally wrong among the political leadership in Anambra state.
If the NWC is serious about PDP winning Anambra state, then they must sit down with all the political stakeholders to encourage them to foster unity so that we can achieve success in election in Anambra state, otherwise, nothing can be achievedâ€, he said.
Fielding questions from Journalists after submitting his congress report to members of the NWC at the PDP National Secretariat, the Benue State Governor, who noted that the party gave him a total of N61 million to conduct the ward congresses, where members of his committee collected N300, 000 each as allowance and N150,000 given each to the Electoral Officers, added that he spent his money to ensure that he succeeded because the money from the national secretariat was not enough for the exercise.
â€œIn a situation where people insist that they must be the person who will win, else nothing will happen, is not a good attitude.
I think these are things that the NWC needs to work on because as far as I am concerned, the party in Anambra state is to a large extent in shambles. There should be serious effort on the part of NWC to foster unity among the political leadership so that our party can achieve victory, otherwise Anambra is 100 per cent PDP.
30 members of the House are PDP members and the Speaker and the Deputy Speaker are all PDP and the Governor is from another party. It then means there is a problem with our party in Anambra state.
â€œWhere there are 47 people contesting for a single position, it means there is serious problem.
â€œI would want to first address the issue of expectation. Before I do that, I want to inform you that I have submitted the report of the congress to the National Working Committee (NWC) of our party and it has been accepted.
I have finished my job, but I had expected that we would have a very difficult congress and actually, what we met on ground was not very encouraging.Â But, we did our best in terms of the conduct of the congress.
â€œFor the first time, materials were distributed to each ward. I hired about 200 buses and those buses took the materials plus the monitoring team to each of the 326 and elections were conducted.
Like most of you must have heard, there were minor hitches here and there but it was generally successful. In any election, you would expect that there will be people who will complain.
But we have conducted the congress and results have been submitted, both the original and the summary sheet, which have been handed over to the NWC.
â€œFor the first time and to some large extent, we had a peaceful conduct of the congress because there were very minimal scuffles among the aspirants and the personnel.”
On the average, we shall say it was a success and results have been submitted.Â When it is published, I believe, some of the aspirants who might have complaints will then submit their complaints to the appeal committee.
We have handed over a copy of the congress to the appeal committee and I believe they have given it to the members of the press. So, it is for the aspirants who contested to look at the results because what I submitted to them is what came from the field and if they have complaints, they lay it before the appeal committee, but as far as I am concerned, I have finished my job.
â€œThere werenâ€™t lots of violence. I did not receive any report regarding shooting.Â Yes, thugs in a few places tried to disrupt voting like where the Minister of Transport went to, few persons who snatched result sheers were arrested and they conducted congress in that place without any hitch. In any election, you expect these minor hitches here and there.
It will be difficult in any place to have elections without some form of hitches or the other. But, on the average, we shall say that 90 per cent of the congress was successful.â€