… as Ortom lobbies Jonathan to attend convention
John Alechenu, Abuja
Fresh facts have emerged about the reason behind the decision of the Peoples Democratic Party to shift its scheduled State Houses of Assemblies, Governorship, House of Representatives primaries.
VANGUARD gathered in Abuja, on Tuesday that disputes over the final list of delegates and reconciliation efforts were central to the decision.
It was also learnt that the party is weighing its options with regards to its desire to build consensus among aspirants.
A top ranking member of the party leadership who spoke in confidence said, “This is politics, we need to reduce friction as much as possible, we intend to build consensus so that the primaries and the national convention will be as rancor free as possible.
He equally said, “We are mindful of happenings in the other party and we intend to put our house in order before going into the convention.”
Under the former timetable, the primaries for the State Houses of Assembly was to hold on Wednesday, May 18, 2022, Senatorial, May 18, 2022, Governorship primaries was scheduled to hold on Monday, May, 23, 2022. The Presidential primary is to hold on May, 28-29, 2022.
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However, the National Working Committee of the party in a letter dated May 16, 2023, which was addressed to the National Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu announced an extension.
In the letter titled: “Further Extension of dates for Party Congresses/primaries.
The National Chairman of the party, Sen. Iyorchia Ayu, said, “The National Working Committee (NWC), of the Official Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Nigeria has extended the dates for party congresses/primaries as follows:
“1. State House of Assembly – Saturday May 21, 2022, House of Representatives – Sunday May 22, 2022, Senate – Monday May 23, 2022, Governorship – Wednesday May 25, 2022.”
The party chairman enjoined all party members, leaders and critical stakeholders to take note.
It was also learnt that a member of the convention planning committee and Benue State Governor, Samuel Ortom, reached out to his former boss, Ex-President GoodLuck Jonathan with a view to getting him to attend the convention.
Jonathan has not attended any PDP event since he lost the 2015 Presidential election. Should he attend this convention, it would be his first in over seven years.
The former President has been dogged by controversies over his alleged romance with the ruling All Progressives Congress.
In a related development, the Senator David Mark- led National Convention Planning Committee, on Tuesday, inspected facilities at the Velodrome of the Mashood Abiola Stadium, the proposed venue for the Convention.