By Dirisu Yakubu, ABUJA
Ahead of the 2023 general elections, the Chairman, Board of Trustees, BoT, Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Senator Walid Jibrin, has called on party leaders to be cautious in handling the zoning of its presidential ticket and other elective office, stating that zoning can destroy the party.
This is even as he pledged the readiness of the board to assist the PDP Governors’ Forum, National Executive Committee, NEC, and other organs of the party to help engender peace ahead of the elective convention.
Addressing newsmen at the party’s national secretariat, Jibrin said the BoT has now been fully constituted in line with the constitution of the party.
“We are not talking about zoning of the offices of the President, Vice President, Senate President or Speaker of the House of Representatives yet.
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“Zoning can mar or destroy our party. But by the grace of God we will not allow it to happen.
“What I can say is that we should never be personal because when you want to be personal, the issue of disunity will come.
“The BoT met today in our continuous commitment to bring peace and unity to this party.
“You are aware that the Constitution of the BoT gives us two categories of members:
“First are the life members, which include all past presidents of Nigeria who are members of the party; all former vice presidents, past Senate presidents and their deputies.
“All past national secretaries, all past governors and all former chairmen who are alive; the secretaries and chairmen of BoT, who are alive.
“Currently, I am the Chairman of the BoT and fully elected by the constitution of the party and the constitution says the Chairman and Secretary must come either from the North or the South.
“Today, I come from the North and Adolphus Wabara, the Secretary of the BoT, comes from the South.
“The constitution also gives the Chairman and the Secretary opportunity to serve for five years only and there is no re-election.
“By God’s grace, we have already spent three years and we are only waiting for the next two years,” he said.
According to him, “It is only the BoT that will elect its Chairman and Secretary. As far as I am concerned, I will continue to be the Chairman until the time elapses.
“Secondly, we inaugurated the members that are not statutory members. These members include one BoT member from each state of the federation and the Federal Capital Territory, FCT.
“Another category is five members of the PDP from the six geo-political zones.
“In the zones, there may be three men elected and two women selected while the states produce one each.
“So, we have 37 members of BoT from the states and 61 members from the zones. These are the people who came today to be inaugurated and they have only three years to serve as BoT members after which their tenure elapses.
“We have inaugurated them and they came from all the states and zones in Nigeria. So, today, we have the full members of BoT.”
The BoT chair also chided the recent conduct of local government polls in Nasarawa state.
“Yesterday (Wednesday), we had local government elections in my state, Nasarawa. It was hell, rigged and undemocratic.
“I have never seen anything like that in my life. And we in Nasarawa Local Government with others have resolved never to accept anything from the All Progressives Congress, APC, in Nasarawa State.
“Out of 13 local governments, about nine did not participate, but we understand they are writing names and they are going to make the announcement.
“I have enjoined our people to remain calm and not to quarrel,” he added.
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