Ahead of the 2023 generaal elections, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has begun search for a credible consensus presidential candidate to fly the party’s flag.
Consequently, the party has scheduled to embark on nationwide consultations among its members.
The chairman of the party’s board of trustees, Mr. Walid Jibrin, who disclosed this to newsmen in Kaduna, also said every interested and eligible member of the party from any part of Nigeria was free to aspire for the presidency on its platform.
He said the party will also use the consultation visits to reconcile its aggrieved members in order to have a united front and position itself for the task of taking over government in 2023 from the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC).
He said it would be better for members to agree on a consensus candidate and work hard to make the party strong and unbeatable in 2023.
Althought he did not say which zone would produce the consensus candidate, he stressed that the BOT believed it was better for the PDP members to agree on a consensus candidate before the general elections.
“On the presidential candidate, the National Working Committee (NWC), in consultation with all relevant organs will reveal the plan soon.
“I don’t think there is anything wrong if anybody from any zone showed interest, but our collective decision will bring out an agreeable candidate.
“What is right now before us is for us to work hard to unite the party by making it strong and unbeatable in the next presidential election.
“The BOT is already making necessary arrangements to end the crisis between governor of Rivers State, Nyeson Wike and the governor of Bayelsa State, Seriake Dickson, and of course, among all party members in order to take over government from the ruling party in 2023.
“The disunity among our PDP governors demands this urgent intervention by the party. The highest advisory body, the BOT, is ready to remain neutral all the time.
“We have also directed the BOT committee on peace and conflicts to visit Edo, Kano, Lagos, Osun, Bayelsa and other states where acrimonies exist to make peace.
“I enjoin all members of our great party to stay away from hate speech and avoid abusive language among us and even among non-members.
“All we need now is consultations and dialogue in solving our problems and not dismissal or suspension.
“Reconciliations should continue in the units, wards, Local government areas, states and national levels,” he said.
On whether the party would adopt its presidential candidate in the 2029 presidential election, Atiku Abubakar, the BoT chairman said the former flagbearer, like every other Nigerian, could still contest if he so wishes.
“After all, Atiku couldn’t have been adjudged to have failed in the last presidential elections.
“Atiku is a Nigerian. Has he really failed in that (2019) election?
“The case went from the tribunal to the appeal court and up to the Supreme Court.
“If Atiku wants, he has the right to do so and other people have the right to do so,” he said.
He asked: “Do you think it’s only Atiku that wants to contest?”
Jibril also disclosed that the BOT had raised a committee to find out why the party lost the recent governorship elections in Bayelsa and Kogi states.