The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Rescue Group has warned the party’s National Chairman, Alhaji Ali Modu Sheriff against shifting the date for the party’s national convention tentatively fixed for May 21.
Rising from a meeting in Abuja on Friday, the group expressed surprise at the state of unpreparedness of the party for the convention.
A statement issued after the meeting warned of the dire consequences of failure to hold the convention as scheduled.
“This apparent foot-dragging has many incalculable damages on our efforts to re-position the PDP as an effective opposition party,” the group stated.The statement was jointly signed by Ambassador Wilberforce Juta and Alhaji Mukhtar Shagari, chairman and secretary of the Rescue Group respectively.
The National Executive Committee (NEC) of the PDP had in February directed Sheriff to put in place a timetable for the state congresses and national convention to elect new leaders for the party.
“The PDP Rescue Group observes that the decision of the NEC is yet to be implemented barely few weeks to the takeoff of the congresses.
“The failure of the National Chairman, Sen. All Modu Sheriff, in establishing the four committees as directed by the NEC has prompted the PDP Rescue Group to live up to its responsibility to salvage the situation by guiding it back on track”, the statement added.
Apparently miffed by the alleged tenure elongation bid by the party chair, the group threw its weight behind the calls for the position of the next chairman to be zoned to the South-West geo-political zone.
The statement continued: “The National Executive Committee (NEE) of the PDP adopted the Ekweremadu Committee’s recommendation to zone the 2019 Presidential ticket to the North.
“This is suggestive that the chairmanship of the party moves to the south in line with the zoning rotation tradition of the party.
“We wish to make it categorically clear that the PDP Rescue Group is in full support of this and other resolutions.
“It was also resolved that the tenure of the current National working Committee (NWC) would end on the day of the National Convention on the 21st of May, 2016, with the election of new officers to run the affairs of the party for the next four years.
“We strongly advise that the four committees approved by NEC be instituted immediately for free, fair and credible congresses and convention to be achieved.
“Party faithful across the country view any attempt to stall the proper implementation of the NEC decisions as an act of sabotage aimed at destroying the party.
“The PDP Rescue Group wishes to commend the courage of the Board of Trustees (BOT) for standing firm on grounds of principles and upholding the decisions of the 69th NEC meeting.“In the same vein, we call on all organs of the party to live up to their responsibilities by ensuring total adherence to the NEC resolutions and their responsibilities by ensuring total adherence to NEC resolutions and their enforcement