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The Atiku Abubakar Presidential Campaign Organisation has said the emergence of a former Senate President, Adolphus Wabara, as the acting Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party Board of Trustees will stabilise the embattled party.
It said while the party was exploring other options in resolving the crisis that resulted from its presidential primary, Wabara’s emergence had created some form of balance for the party in the interim.
The spokesperson for the Atiku Abubakar Presidential Campaign Organisation, Charles Aniagwu, who stated these during a programme on Arise TV, said sacking the PDP National Chairman, Dr Iyorchia Ayu, would have created a constitutional crisis for the party, that would snowball into greater problems.
He also said the call for Ayu’s removal had been overtaken by events following the vote of confidence passed on him by the National Executive Committee.
“People may misinterpret it to mean calling the bluff of certain stakeholders but that is far from it because the party’s leadership examined the issues vis-a-vis the provisions of the party’s constitution as amended in 2017. When you look at that constitution, there are principal officers called the National Working Committee of the party led by the national chairman and in the order of hierarchy, the deputy national chairman who must also come from the same zone as the national chairman, is next in line.
“The third in line is the National Secretary and when you look at these positions, the national chairman is from the North, the second in command is also from the North by virtue of the provision of the party’s constitution.
“In Section 45 of the party’s constitution, in the event of removal or resignation of the national chairman, the national deputy chairman takes over and acts in the position of that national chairman, pending when the party is able to organise another election or do a NEC meeting to be able to take a decision as to how to rearrange the hierarchy of the party,” he added.
Aniagwu said because the positions were elective, even if Ayu were to step down for power to come to the South, the provisions of the constitution of the party would also be offended.
He said, “That can only happen if you can also take a decision to remove the deputy national chairman of the party who the lot immediately falls on by provisions of the law. Even if the party is able to solve that puzzle by bringing both national chairman and deputy to the South, the third person in the hierarchy of the National Working Committee of the party is the national secretary and that is in the South, specifically, Senator Samuel Anyanwu from Imo State.
“ Now, if you decide to bring these two positions to the South, have you also made arrangements to take the national secretary to the North? Due to these legal impediments, the party examined it that given the time we have, which is just about six months to the general elections, it may likely snowball into some form of crisis that could trigger a whole lot of discomfort within the party and it could be worse than the one we are seeing at the moment.
“That greater crisis is what the ruling APC is waiting for but the leadership of the party is intelligent enough and I am happy that Governor Nyesom Wike and other leaders appreciate the need for the party to move as one into the 2023 general elections.”
The presidential campaign spokesperson also said it was on the basis of this that the party decided to look at what was possible at the moment and that it gave room for the resignation of Senator Walid Jibrin and the subsequent emergence of Senator Adolphus Wabara as the chairman of the Board of Trustees.
He added, “The emergence of Wabara in the South to join the vice presidential candidate and national secretary had created some form of balance in the interim. What is most important is that there is a bigger elephant here which is winning the 2023 general elections, because Nigerians are looking up to the PDP to rescue the nation from where we are at the moment.
“I am convinced that our leaders who have been craving for these changes will appreciate the fact that the party is listening but because of time probably when the party may have won the elections in 2023 by the grace of God, we can now proceed to make some of these alterations that may not be injurious to our quest to win the general elections.”