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Three likely successors to Ogbeh emerge, already

Posted by by Yusuf Alli on 2005/01/11 | Views: 320 |

Three likely successors to Ogbeh emerge, already


The race for the position of the National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party commenced on Monday, a few hours after the present occupant, Chief Audu Ogbeh announced his decision to resign.

The race for the position of the National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party commenced on Monday, a few hours after the present occupant, Chief Audu Ogbeh announced his decision to resign.

Although a source said that The Presidency was shopping for his successor, our correspondent gathered that three contenders had emerged.

They are the present Deputy National Chairman (North), Alhaji Ibrahim Safana; a former Governor of Plateau State, Chief Fidelis Tapgun; and a former Minister of Education, Col. Ahmadu Ali (rtd).

A presidency source said, “The choice is still an open thing. The President will decide who he could work with.

“I agree that many people are lobbying, but the President has the final say. We are searching for a candidate. We can no longer leave the affairs of the party to anybody.

“We (all groups) shall all meet at the next NEC meeting to choose a new chairman.”

However, the dilemma of The Presidency at press time was the time lapse between the vacuum created by Ogbeh’s exit and the National Convention of the party in November.

A source said, “We have the choice of either picking an Interim National Chairman, or asking one of the Deputy National Chairmen to take charge before the convention.

“The idea of an interim chairman is alien to the party, but it depends on the decision of The Presidency. If we go for an interim chairman, we have a constitutional dilemma at hand.”

Article 15 2(1) of PDP Constitution says, “In the absence of the National Chairman, the Deputy National Chairman from the chairman’s zone shall preside at meetings and act on his behalf.

Also, Article 15(20(d) of the constitution states that, “In the event of his removal or resignation from office, a party officer shall immediately hand over to the chairman, or the chairman’s nominees, all records, files and other properties of the party in his possession.

“In the case of the chairman, he shall hand over to the secretary at the appropriate level.”

A member of the National Working Committee of PDP, who spoke in confidence with our correspondent, said, “There is no constitutional dilemma at all.

“Go and read Article 18 (4) of PDP constitution and you will get a clearer picture of the situation. People like to speak from a point of political sentiment.”

The NWC member explained, “Article 18(4) says that should a vacancy occur in any of the party offices, the appropriate executive committee shall appoint a substitute from the zone where the former office holder originated pending the conduct of election at the next congress or convention.”

In spite of the divergence on the interpretation of the party’s constitution, it was learnt that different blocs within the party began marathon consultations in Abuja last night to recommend a successor to Ogbeh to President Obasanjo.

Out of the three contenders for the office, Alhaji Ibrahim Safana may face a stiff opposition over his alleged loyalty to Vice President Atiku Abubakar who coordinates a strong axis in PDP.

Tapgun and Ali are banking on North Central zonal sentiment and closeness to Aso Rock to become interim chairman.

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Comments (2)

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Toluwalase Samuel Olufemi(Ijebu, Ogun, Nigeria)says...

Authority belongs to God, once He decrees it is final and binding

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Ikponmwosa Osamede(Edo, Nigeria)says...

Your meaning of Osamede is wrong. Osamede means God has given me a crown