Kwankwaso, Wali Feud Forces PDP To Postpone N/West Zonal Congress

November 19, 2021
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The refusal of a former governor of Kano State, Rabiu Kwankwaso and a former minister of Foreign Affairs, Ambassador Aminu Wali, to shift grounds on the lingering crisis over the North West zonal vice chairmanship position has forced the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to postpone its zonal congress for the fourth time.

The camps of Kwankwaso and Wali in Kano State have been battling over the position which was zoned to the state seven months ago.

The National Working Committee (NWC) had late on Wednesday announced the postponement of the party’s zonal congress scheduled for Saturday.

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The National Organising Secretary, Austin Akobundu, said the decision was predicated on certain unforeseen “circumstances that would very likely affect the conduct of the congress.’’

A clash between the supporters of Governor Aminu Tambuwal of Sokoto State and Kwankwaso on April 10 during the zonal congress at the Kaduna Trade Fair Complex, led to an abrupt postponement of the exercise.

This is the fourth time that the congress would be postponed. After the botched exercise in April, it was fixed for September 4, and later rescheduled to October 9 and then November 20.

While the camp of Kwankwaso is pushing for the candidature of Mohammed Jamo, Wali’s camp is sponsoring Senator Bello Hayatu Gwarzo for the position.

Reliable sources at the party secretariat in Abuja, said the party leaders postponed the exercise when all entreaties to the camps to shift their positions failed.

One of the sources said the outgoing members of the party’s NWC have decided to leave the conduct of the congress until after the inauguration of the Iyorchia Ayu NWC.

“The main reason for the postponement is because the duo of Kwankwaso and Wali are insisting on their positions. The exercise will now be conducted by the Ayu-NWC when inaugurated,” the source said, pleading not to be named.

The party had fixed December 9 for the inauguration of the new NWC elected last month.

Another source from the South West said the battle was beyond Aminu Wali, adding that, “It is those who are nursing presidential ambition from the North West that want to whittle Kwankwaso’s influence.

“You know that is the biggest position in the zone. So, they want Wali who is not nursing presidential ambition to produce the zonal vice chair. If Kwankwaso produces it, he would be in a better position for the presidential race,” the source, a party leader, said.

He said the series of intervention by the reconciliation committee of the party chaired by a former Senate president, Bukola Saraki, on the matter, yielded no result.

Reacting to the postponement, Muhammina Bako Lamido, chairman of Kano PDP faction loyal to Wali, said they are optimistic the national leadership of the party will fix a more conducive date for the congress.

Efforts to get reaction from the Kwankwasiyya movement were not successful as of press time. But in an interview with BBC Hausa Service, Kwankwaso said the crisis was being fuelled by some “selfish stalwarts’’ of the party.’

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