From Ndubuisi Orji, Abuja
The presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) would be determined at the May 28 and 29 convention.
The party’s stakeholders from the 19 northern states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) led by former governor of Jigawa State, Sule Lamido, stated this after a meeting in Abuja, yesterday.
The meeting was attended by former Adamawa State governor, Bonnie Haruna, former minister of Police Affairs, Adamu Waziri, former Kogi State governor, Ibrahim Idris, former Niger State governor, Babangida Aliyu and former minister of National Planning, Sanusi Dagash.
Lamido, while briefing newsmen, on behalf of the stakeholders, after the meeting, said the parley was necessitated by the selection of Bauchi State Governor, Bala Mohammed and former Senate president, Bukola Saraki, as northern PDP consensus presidential aspirants by some northern elders.
The former governor, who said they were aware that the presidential aspirants were discussing urged them to work to promote harmony within the PDP.
“We would like to state from the onset that there is nothing called the northern PDP. Our coming together as key stakeholders from the northern states is only for the purpose of debunking any notion or impression which might have been created by Ango Abdullahi media statement about the Northern Elders’ Forum having shortlisted consensus PDP presidential candidates.
“PDP, as conceived by its founding fathers, is and remains the foremost national political platform wherein the democratic aspirations of its members can be actualised devoid of any sectional consideration. Our party is neither northern nor southern but Nigeria. We are happy to note that the Northern Elders’ Forum has, through its Secretary, Hakeem Baba Ahmed, disassociated itself from Ango’s media statement. The forum made it clear that it is Ango’s personal opinion.
“The aspirants have informed us that they are discussing among themselves. They are consulting other senior citizens in order to create a better understanding and unity among themselves. Their ultimate objective is to build a national consensus that will produce a national candidate for the party. We urge them to keep up with this commendable effort.
“Our meeting today is to reinforce on a statement issued on April 23 by Lamido. We maintain that all our aspirants are qualified to occupy the Nigerian presidency under the PDP banner and we shall continue to support, promote and campaign and win the presidency by the candidate produced by our national convention scheduled for May 28 and 29.
“We appeal to all aspirants to be more temperate in their utterances and work to promote harmony and better understanding within the PDP family,” the stakeholders said.