BoT Chair Split PDP

BoT Chair Split PDP


THE issue of who leads the Board of Trustees (BoT) of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) appears to be causing further cracks in the party, as agitation for zonal balancing of the party structures and political positions intensifies.

Reporters learnt that the battle for the PDP BoT has pitched politicians of the South-West zone against their counterparts from the South-South and South-East, following the decision of the board to fill the post on January 8, 2013.

A meeting to appoint a new leader of the BoT was held at the Presidetial Villa, Abuja on Friday night.

Sources said the meeting, which was presided over by President Goodluck Jonathan, was marked by intrigues and deft horsetrading among those eyeing the position and their supporters.

Report says top leaders shuttled between the Presidential Villa for many hours on Friday, in a bid to fix the trustee leadership between its former occupier, Chief Tony Anenih; and former Senate President, Ken Nnamani, with Senator Ahmadu Ali and Chief Emmanuel Iwuanyawu said to have their sympathisers among the president’s powerbrokers.

The intensity of the lobbying was due to the desire of some forces within the party to ensure that the BoT is placed in what a source called safe hand ahead of the 2015 contest.

Though the BoT is advisory in capacity, it was learnt that loyalists of the president are pushing for a nominee that is both loyal and credible, in line with his pledge to reposition the party.

It emerged that while the former occupant of the post, Anenih, is angling for a return, some top South-West PDP members are insisting that the zone, which has been allegedly marginalised in the scheme of things in the politcal setup, should be made to fill the slot vacated by former President Olusegun Obasanjo.

Those said to have given the intention to vie for the post are former Chairman of the BoT of the All Nigerian Peoples Party (ANPP), Chief Harry Akande, and a former Deputy National Chairman of the PDP, Alhaji Shuaib Oyedokun.

It was gathered that the South-West was making a strong showing and claiming the right of first refusal on the slot.

A source in the party said equity demanded that the slot be allocated to the South-West in view of the fact that the zone had already been marginalised in the party.

Sources, however, said most members of the BoT are waiting to see the direction of President Jonathan, who is said to be favouring a consensus arrangement where an acceptable candidate would emerge.

“The president does not favour election. He believes that holding election would further polarise the party. He wants a consensus candidate to emerge. That is why he didn’t want to discourage the idea of people vyimg for the post,” a close aide of the president told reporters.

Although President Jonathan was said not to have favoured any candidate, various interest groups were said to be lobbying to ensure that their men get the post, with representation from the South-West clamouring for redress of the zone’s marginalisation.

“I can assure you that a number of persons are rooting for the return of Chief Tony Anenih to that slot. They believe that it would be a befitting crown for him after he lost the slot in controversial manners in 2007, following the staged takeover by Obasanjo. A number of members are being told that Jonathan wants Anenih to take over the slot and organise the board, but issues are being raised,” a source said.

According to the source, members from the South-West are clamouring for equity, saying that with the resignation of Obasanjo from the post, the zone should retain it.

It was gathered that the position of the BoT should actually reside in the South, since the national chairman of the party and the secretary of the BoT are already from the North. The South-South also has the president, while the South-East has the position of Secretary to the Government of the Federation, deputy Senate president and deputy speaker of the House of Representatives. The post of speaker of the House allotted to the South-West was taken over by the North-West which had already produced the vice-president.

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THE issue of who leads the Board of Trustees (BoT) of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) appears to be causing further cracks in the party, as agitation for zonal balancing of the party structures and political positions intensifies.

Reporters learnt that the battle for the PDP BoT has pitched politicians of the South-West zone against their counterparts from the South-South and South-East, following the decision of the board to fill the post on January 8, 2013.

A meeting to appoint a new leader of the BoT was held at the Presidetial Villa, Abuja on Friday night.

Sources said the meeting, which was presided over by President Goodluck Jonathan, was marked by intrigues and deft horsetrading among those eyeing the position and their supporters.

Report says top leaders shuttled between the Presidential Villa for many hours on Friday, in a bid to fix the trustee leadership between its former occupier, Chief Tony Anenih; and former Senate President, Ken Nnamani, with Senator Ahmadu Ali and Chief Emmanuel Iwuanyawu said to have their sympathisers among the president’s powerbrokers.

The intensity of the lobbying was due to the desire of some forces within the party to ensure that the BoT is placed in what a source called safe hand ahead of the 2015 contest.

Though the BoT is advisory in capacity, it was learnt that loyalists of the president are pushing for a nominee that is both loyal and credible, in line with his pledge to reposition the party.

It emerged that while the former occupant of the post, Anenih, is angling for a return, some top South-West PDP members are insisting that the zone, which has been allegedly marginalised in the scheme of things in the politcal setup, should be made to fill the slot vacated by former President Olusegun Obasanjo.

Those said to have given the intention to vie for the post are former Chairman of the BoT of the All Nigerian Peoples Party (ANPP), Chief Harry Akande, and a former Deputy National Chairman of the PDP, Alhaji Shuaib Oyedokun.

It was gathered that the South-West was making a strong showing and claiming the right of first refusal on the slot.

A source in the party said equity demanded that the slot be allocated to the South-West in view of the fact that the zone had already been marginalised in the party.

Sources, however, said most members of the BoT are waiting to see the direction of President Jonathan, who is said to be favouring a consensus arrangement where an acceptable candidate would emerge.

“The president does not favour election. He believes that holding election would further polarise the party. He wants a consensus candidate to emerge. That is why he didn’t want to discourage the idea of people vyimg for the post,” a close aide of the president told reporters.

Although President Jonathan was said not to have favoured any candidate, various interest groups were said to be lobbying to ensure that their men get the post, with representation from the South-West clamouring for redress of the zone’s marginalisation.

“I can assure you that a number of persons are rooting for the return of Chief Tony Anenih to that slot. They believe that it would be a befitting crown for him after he lost the slot in controversial manners in 2007, following the staged takeover by Obasanjo. A number of members are being told that Jonathan wants Anenih to take over the slot and organise the board, but issues are being raised,” a source said.

According to the source, members from the South-West are clamouring for equity, saying that with the resignation of Obasanjo from the post, the zone should retain it.

It was gathered that the position of the BoT should actually reside in the South, since the national chairman of the party and the secretary of the BoT are already from the North. The South-South also has the president, while the South-East has the position of Secretary to the Government of the Federation, deputy Senate president and deputy speaker of the House of Representatives. The post of speaker of the House allotted to the South-West was taken over by the North-West which had already produced the vice-president.

Do not hesitate to leave your opinion in the comment section below.

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To contact Paradigmshiftng.com for Article Submission and Advertisement or General inquiry, send a mail to admin@paradigmshiftng.com

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