2023: How PDP governors frustrated Peter Obi out of the party - AfrobadooTV
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2023: How PDP governors frustrated Peter Obi out of the party

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Fresh details of the reasons former governor of Anambra State, and presidential aspirant, Mr Peter Obi, resigned from the main opposition Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, and quit seeking the party’s 2023 presidential ticket emerged yesterday.

Some governors elected on the platform of the party practically pushed him out of the PDP, after a high-wire game of intrigues, and conspiracy, Vanguard gathered last night.

Obi, who was the vice-presidential candidate of the party in 2019, during which his South-East zone contributed more votes to the PDP than the North-East, the zone of the presidential candidate, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, was left with nothing after the power game, it was learned.

In 2019, with Obi on the ballot as running mate to Atiku, the PDP garnered 1,693,485 votes (75 per cent) from the five states of the South-East; and 1,255,357 votes (27.5 per cent) from the North-East.

Conversely, the APC polled 403,968 votes (19 per cent) in the South-East and 3,238,783 votes (67.5 per cent) in the North-East.

A top player in the power game in the PDP told Vanguard that “Obi was hoping to emerge as the running mate to Atiku again since the PDP, from all indications, is not ready to cede the presidency to the South-East.

Why Peter Obi dumped PDP, withdrew from presidential race
“However, most of the PDP governors said they will back Atiku if he makes one of them his running mate. This led to a highwire conspiracy against Obi in the PDP. So he had to look elsewhere to pursue his aspirations.”

Indeed, in his resignation letter to the National Chairman of the PDP, Dr Iyorchia Ayu, the former Anambra State governor said he was quitting the PDP because the party had made it impossible for him to continue to contribute to nation-building on its platform.

Obi wrote: “I am writing to intimate you of my resignation from the Peoples Democratic Party, which was conveyed to the Chairman of Agulu Ward 2. Anaocha LGA, Anambra, effective Friday 20 May 2022. Consequently, I am by this letter informing you of my withdrawal from the PDP Presidential Primaries.

“It has been a great honour to contribute to nation-building efforts through our party. Unfortunately, recent developments within our party make it practically impossible to continue participating and making such constructive contributions

“Our national challenges are deep-seated and require that we each make profound sacrifices towards rescuing our country. My commitment to rescuing Nigeria remains firm, even if the route differs.”

Govs tighten grip on delegates, ahead of APC, and PDP presidential primaries

Apart from the PDP, governors elected on the platform of the ruling All Progressives Congress, APC, have also firmed up their control of the lever of power in their various states and are set to determine the outcome of the presidential primaries of both parties.

The outcomes of the governorship primaries of the APC and PDP across the states where the governors picked re-election tickets or got their anointed candidates to win, indicate the strength of the governors.

Last week, Vanguard reported that governors’ vowed to deliver the candidates at all levels, including the presidency.

In the APC, Vanguard gathered that the governors are also part of the reasons for delaying the screening of presidential aspirants.

“President Muhammadu Buhari was supposed to meet the governors this morning (yesterday) to show his hand on his preferred successor and thereafter meet the presidential aspirants before travelling out of the country. However, he could not meet with the aspirants because he did not meet with the governors. They have not ironed out grey areas in the modified consensus they want to adopt.

The president has to settle with APC governors before the screening of presidential aspirants. Former President Goodluck Jonathan is on the cards but settling for his running mate is a major problem. A major issue in the party now is how to settle the power blocs,” a source told Vanguard.

APC may shelve screening, mulls adoption of security reports on aspirants

Indeed, two days before its presidential convention, indications have emerged that the APC might shelve its screening of presidential aspirants and instead rely on security reports on the aspirants.

It was not immediately clear if security reports on all the aspirants were positive or if the party would use any negative report to shut out some of the aspirants through back-channel negotiations.

The presidential primary is slated for Sunday and Monday next week.

Vanguard had earlier reported that the Department of State Service, DSS had days ago begun profiling and vetting political aspirants to enable the service to fish out criminal elements who should not be entrusted with sensitive offices and positions in the country and guide relevant agencies, parties and institutions appropriately.

“What we are doing is an examination of existing records already before us to determine what has changed and what has not and to be able to determine the extent of the inconsistency in each profile to advise those involved accordingly in the interest of the country,” a security official had explained.

APC had more than four times readjusted its timetable and even postponed indefinitely its screening of presidential aspirants.

While it promised to announce a new date in due course, the party had since kept mum on the issue.

4 out of 1,197 House of Reps aspirants disqualified

Meanwhile, the APC has disqualified four of the 1,197 aspirants for the House of Representatives.

Of the 1,197 aspirants, there were petitions against 65. After going through the petitions, the party’s relevant committee disqualified four.

The appeal panel upheld the disqualification of Mr Sunday Oche from Benue State and three others, from participating in the party’s primaries scheduled for Friday (today).

This was contained in the report of the three-man appeal panel, dated May 20, 2022, and submitted to the National Chairman, Senator Abdullahi Adamu, through the office of the National Organizing Secretary.

According to the 19-page report signed by its chairman, Chief Chinedu Okonkwo, secretary, Barr. Kate Nnamani and its member, Hon. Robinson Uwak, the affected aspirants were disqualified in line with the party’s guidelines and extant laws.

Mr Oche who seeks to represent Ado/Okpokwu/Ogbadibo Federal Constituency of Benue State was disqualified due to a pending criminal case against him before a magistrate’s court in Bwari, Abuja, bordering on forgery, perjury and conspiracy.

“Having gone through the petition and given the weighty allegations therein and exhibits attached, this Committee made frantic efforts to reach out to the respondent (Mr Oche Sunday Oche) through numerous phone calls to make himself available before the Committee to clarify the veracity of the said allegations, to no avail”, the report read in part.

The Committee also said it was able to establish that a criminal trial of Mr Oche was ongoing at the Magistrate’s Court, Bwari with suit number CR/23/2022 and seriously frowned at the refusal of the aspirant to disclose it while filing his nomination forms.

The Committee, therefore, resolved “that Mr Oche Sunday Oche’s failure to disclose the pending criminal trial against him while filing his nomination form is a fraudulent act and a total failure of an integrity test expected of any leader seeking to lead the party at any level. Worse still, it is an unpardonable breach of the party’s guidelines and instructions which is capable of negatively affecting the party’s victory in the forthcoming election.

“That the ongoing criminal trial against Mr Oche Sunday Oche is one capable of securing him a 14-year imprisonment if found guilty and the party cannot be seen to be taking such a costly risk”.

On his part, Dr Pascal Obi Chigozie, who seeks to represent Ideato North/South Federal Constituency of Imo State, was disqualified on grounds of anti-party activities.

The Committee said the petitions from the party’s National Vice Chairman (South East), Dr Ijeomah Arodiogbu and two other members of APC alluded to the fact that the aspirant had earlier presented himself before the screening committee of the People’s Democratic Party PDP on April 29, 2022.

Another aspirant, Hon. Archibong Bassey Joseph from Cross River State was said to have been disqualified after carefully attending to the petition from his brother, Elder Joseph Bassey, alluding that he is the valid owner of the WAEC certificate submitted by the aspirant and that he did not have his express permission to use it. Hon. Effiong Robinson Edumoh from Akwa Ibom, on the other hand, was disqualified by the appeal panel due to a “discrepancy in the identity of the aspirant.”

Edumoh was said to have filled ‘Edumoh, Robinson Effiong’ in the expression of interest and nomination forms, whereas, the name appearing on his voter’s card reads ‘Abianga, Robinson Effiong.’

APC’ll decide on zoning after screening presidential aspirants — Adamu

Speaking on the controversies trailing zoning and screening of presidential aspirants, the National Chairman of the APC, Senator Abdullahi Adamu said no zoning agreement has been reached for the presidential ticket, adding that the party will take a stand on the matter after screening the contenders.

“We have not produced our candidate for the presidency yet, we have to screen the aspirants to know the way forward. We have aspirants from across the country in the presidential race. We will make the decision when we get there.”

Adamu said it is the right of party members to run for any elective position in the party.

“You can’t stop our party stalwarts from contesting elections or aspiring for the presidency. It is their right, and we are happy for them. There is nothing wrong for anybody aspiring for the exalted seat of the president, it is God that decides who gets what,” he said.

“We have 28 aspirants for the presidential ticket, and everybody knows that all of them cannot get the ticket. If it’s God’s wish, they all can even be president of the country one after the other. Our goal is to ensure justice in the choice of who emerges as the candidate of the party.”

Vanguard News Nigeria

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PHOTOS: Large Turnout As Tinubu Campaign In Lagos

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There was a large turnout of supporters in Lagos State on Saturday at the All Progressives Congress (APC) presidential and governorship campaign rally held at Teslim Balogun Stadium, Surulere.

Photos posted by the official Twitter account of the APC Presidential Campaign Council show hundreds of supporters seated with banners displaying the names and images of the party’s presidential candidate, Bola Tinubu and his running mate, Kashim Shettima.

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INDEPENDENT CAMPAIGN GROUP FLOATED IN LAGOS FOR TINUBU, SANWO-OLU

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Tayo Ayinde, Baba Eto lead grassroots campaign for APC candidates

An Independent Campaign Group (ICG) has been floated in Lagos State for the re-election of Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu and the actualisation of the presidential ambition of the All Progressives Congress (APC) presidential candidate, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu.

Frontline politician and Christian leader, Cardinal James Odunmbaku, popularly known as Baba Eto, is the chairman of the independent group whose role will be complementary to the ongoing campaign of the Lagos APC.

Chief of Staff to the Governor, Mr. Tayo Ayinde, who led similar effort in 2018, is the Director General of the ICG. Ayinde will be overseeing the activities of all the directorates under the group.

The ICG was constituted purposely for the mobilisation of voters at the grassroots level towards meeting the target of five million votes for the party in the presidential candidate and to deliver votes across Lagos councils for the party’s governorship flag bearer.

Odunmbaku said the mandate of the ICG was to create a penetrating structure that would independently take the party’s campaign activities to the grassroots. He said the group’s mission was to operate from the grassroots to the top level.

He said: “Our work is a simple but technical one, because we operate from the grassroots to the top level. This Independent Campaign Group is an assembly of grassroots volunteers and mobilisers working for the actualisation of the presidential ambition of our leader, Asiwaju Tinubu, and for the re-election of our performing Governor Sanwo-Olu.

“Everyone appointed into this group has been given the charge to engage Lagosians on our message. They have shown their readiness to work and take the campaign to the voters in theirs abodes. Our operation and activities are independent of the party’s ongoing campaign but we will be working in complementary to the campaign activities of the party.”

Heads of the 60 directorates in the group were sworn in on Friday at its office in GRA, Ikeja.

Bashorun Sikiru Alabi-McFoy is the Deputy Director General. Chairman of Conference 57 in Lagos, Hon. Kolade Alabi, is the adviser to the group m.

There are four Assistant Directors-General for the ICG in the three senatorial districts, with Lagos West having two Deputy DGs to oversee the group’s activities in Badagry and Ikeja divisions.

Jubril Gawat, an influential social media user and Senior Special Assistant to Gov. Sanwo-Olu on New Media, leads the Directorate of Digital Communications.

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I have never, won’t run my administration on religious bias, Tinubu assures CAN

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…says choice of Shettima has nothing to do with religion

Presidential Candidate of the All Progressives Congress, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, has assured the leadership of the Christian Association of Nigeria that he will not run his administration on the basis of religion if elected President of Nigeria.

Tinubu who met with the CAN leadership in Abuja on Wednesday at an interactive session assured them that the same way his administration did not discriminate against anyone either based on tribe, religion or gender when he was Lagos Governor, he would not start such in office as president.

He was accompanied to the session by his wife, Senator Oluremi Tinubu, Presidential Running mate, Senator Kashim Shettima, House of Representatives Speaker Femi Gbajabiamila, Governors Hope Uzodinnma (Imo), David Umahi (Ebonyi), Abdullahi Ganduje (Kano), Abdulrahman Abdulrasaq (Kwara), Deputy Senate Leader Senator Boroffice Ajayi, Senate Chief Whip Senator Orji Uzor Kalu, Minister of Special Duties, Senator George Akume and many others.

The leadership of CAN under new president Daniel Ukoh presented a charter of demands and issues to the APC presidential candidate.

They demanded among others state police or a decentralized policing system, devolution of power to states, equal rights for all religions and their adherents, right to self-determination by all ethnic groups, right to control natural resources by communities that bear them, no to open grazing, and equitable electoral system that guarantees the right to vote and be voted for by all.

Tinubu said, “My belief in the need for secular government and faith-based organizations to work in unison is not something adopted recently to benefit my campaign.

“As Governor of Lagos, I partnered with the Christian to improve lives and foster education. For instance, I returned mission schools to their owners, most of who are Christians.

“I instituted yearly Christian Denomination Service at the Governor’s residence as we approached the new year. This tradition continues in Lagos.

“More importantly, we fostered an atmosphere of religious tolerance and inter-faith collaboration. My cabinet was diverse and talented.

“In the exercise of government, I did not give a thought to whether a team member was Christian or Muslim, Yoruba, Igbo or Arewa.

“I have never lent myself to baseless prejudice and discrimination. To do so would be a recipe for failure in the governance of a diverse society and I am not a man that is familiar with failing.

“I never chased people out of Lagos nor made them feel unwanted. Under my administration Lagos welcomed all comers and continues to do so today.

“After me, Lagos has had one Muslim and two Christian governors. I may not be perfect. What human being is? But I am not a petty man secretly wedded to secret biases and prejudices.

“As such, I see all Nigerians as equals and as brothers and sisters in our national family. This means no one is inherently inferior or superior to anyone else, regardless of faith, place of origin, social status and gender. Anyone who does not hold this fair and equitable view, should not run for president in a country such as ours.”

He said the Christian body has a great role as the moral compass of the society which he cherishes and will always support.

“You, as an organization and as individual leaders of CAN, are entrusted as the watch person of the welfare of this society from a Christian perspective. Which means functioning in an atmosphere of charity, understanding, patience and wisdom.

” I understand the tremendous importance of your work and have nothing but the deepest respect for your selfless contributions to our national cause,” he added.

On his choice of Senator Kashim Shettima as his running mate, which has generated a lot of controversies, Tinubu assured the Christian body that he made the best available choice at his disposal without recourse to religious sentiments.

“I did not choose Senator Shettima so that we could form a same faith ticket. The ticket was constructed as a same progressive and people- based ideology ticket.

“I offer a confession. I selected Senator Shettima thinking more about who would best help me govern. Picking a Christian running mate would have been politically easier. But the easy way is rarely the right one. The selection of a running mate is at once a very momentous yet very intimate decision.

“Resting such a key decision on religious affiliation as the primary weight did not sit well with me. I am not saying there were not good and adequate potential running mates of the Christian faith.

“What I am saying is that the times we inhabit do not lend themselves to the good or adequate. We have urgent problems that lend themselves not to a Christian or Muslim solution. We need the best solution.

“Every time I thought about it, and I did think a lot; I came to the same conclusion: Kashim Shettima

— His faith was immaterial.

— He is a brilliant man with superior intellectual capacity. He is studious and detailed oriented. Enjoying excellent organization skills, Shettima fully understands the vital difference between governance and politics.

— This exceptionally gifted human being has humility of spirit, courage of his convictions and a strongly progressive world view in harmony with my own perspectives on government and its relationship to the governed.

— I trust the calibre of the man. I know the great lengths he went in fighting Boko Haram in his state. He did his best to protect the Christian community and rebuilt damaged churches.

— This man understands the value of our national diversity in all of its ramifications, including religious. He possesses the courage to stand up to those who would wreck that diversity and freedom.”

He continued, “I know people have reacted harshly to my selection. They have done so without knowing the man or giving him or me a fair chance.

“The rumour that this is some plot to suppress the Christian community is untrue and unfortunate.

“I can no more suppress the Christians of this nation than I can suppress the Christians in my own household, my very family. You all know my wife is Christian and a pastor. My children are Christians. I can no more disown them and their choice of faith than I can disown myself. As a husband and father to Christian wife and children, hearing such allegations is hurtful.”

He thereafter shared his campaign policies with the Christian leaders, asking for their support.

“We must move the nation forward more quickly so that hatred and pettiness haven’t a chance to imbed themselves and become the main colours of the fabric of our society.

“My team, Senator Shettima and I have crafted our Action Plan for Nigeria titled Renewed Hope. This agenda is based on the progressive notion that our economy must be recalibrated to ensure better jobs and wages for people. That all are entitled to basic health care and education.

“We will combat hunger and poverty by growing more food and better rewarding farmers for their toil.

“We shall revive our industrial capacity to provide work for our growing urban population and to produce more of the things that we need.

“Where the private sector thrives, we will not attempt to fix what is not broken. Where it falters, government shall lend a hand to keep people employed and the economy vibrant. Where there is a gap, we must fill it so that we more fully employ our idle workforce and productive capacity.

“We must better tend to the poor, vulnerable and elderly by strengthening the social safety net.

“We shall end the fuel subsidy because it has become an unproductive policy favouring an elite that needs no favours while giving the people precious little. Funds that were previously used for the subsidy will be invested in public transportation and other infrastructure, education, and health.

“Let us advance to the economy point where no parent is forced to send their children to bed hungry and no one is fearful that tomorrow will bring more lack and poverty.

“Fiscal power and authority shall be recalibrated to give the states more latitude to better fulfil their mandate of grassroots development and empowerment of people and local communities, This includes assessing each state’s best option regarding a more active role in crime prevention and law enforcement.

“On security, we will not relent until terrorists, kidnappers and criminals quit their malign ways or are completely defeated. We shall augment our security forces and use advanced technology to track and defeat these evil groups,” he added.

In their contributions, Vice Presidential Candidate Shettima, House Speaker Gbajabiamila, Governor Ganduje and Senate Chief Whip Kalu attested to Asíwájú Tinubu’s character and integrity.

They said he usually places merit and competence above any other factor in choosing who to work with and he is always moved to act in the best interest of the country.

Tinubu Media Office
Tunde Rahman
November 16, 2022

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