Party (PDP), to get the presidential tickets of their parties zoned to their regions has worsened the cracks already bedevilling the parties, Daily Trust reports.
Daily Trust reports that although the two parties are yet to zone their presidential tickets to any part of the country, the stalwarts are all out to get them zoned to their regions ahead of the 2023 politicking.
Machinations and scheming for zoning, one of our correspondents reported, have heightened underground wrangling between blocs of the two main parties.
In PDP, the defection of Ebonyi State Governor David Umahi was the climax of the machinations for the party’s ticket to be zoned to South-east, political observers have said.
Weeks before his defection, agitation for the zoning of the PDP presidential ticket to the South-east peaked. Top chieftains of the party in the South-east had requested that the party’s ticket be zoned to their region.
Top sources in the party, however, told Daily Trust that PDP may leave its presidential ticket open to all parts of the country.
The source, who is a member of the National Working Committee (NWC) of the party said: “We want to give all parts of the country fair opportunity.”
However, another source said the party was considering zoning the presidential ticket to the North.
“Remember that the trouble of our party started when it’s zoning arrangement was altered to enable former President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan to contest in 2015.
“The jettisoning of the zoning arrangement caused our defeat. So, we have learnt our lesson and we will remedy it. With the situation Nigerians are in, in the areas of the economy, security and others, proper zoning will send APC out of the government in 2023,” the PDP source said.
In APC, the plan to extend the tenure of the Governor Mai Mala Buni-led caretaker committee is part of the scheming of the blocs in the party.
Before President Muhammadu Buhari’s nephew, Malam Mamman Daura advocated for the jettisoning of the zoning arrangement, the permutation in the APC was that its presidential ticket would be zoned to the South.
A former governor from the North told Daily Trust that the tension in the party was as a result of the plot to alter the zoning arrangement in the party.
“I’m a northerner but in the spirit of fairness, we should zone our party’s ticket to the South. But as it is now, there are contrary plans. This is not good and that is why we are having blocs causing troubles for us,” he said during a chat with Daily Trust.
Contacted, PDP National Publicity Secretary Kola Ologbondiyan told Daily Trust in a telephone chat, yesterday that it was too early to talk about the 2023 elections.
“We have not reached the position of zoning in the PDP. There are conversations in the polity about zoning. But PDP as a political party has processes and procedures. We are not a party owned by one man in the North and one man in the South.
“PDP is a national party. So to arrive at any decision, you need to meet with all the various organs of the party,” he said.
Similarly, APC Deputy National Publicity Secretary Yekini Nabena told our correspondent in a telephone chat that the party was not afraid of zoning.
He said the party will even become stronger after zoning its presidential ticket.
“The discussion is that all critical stakeholders from the six geo-political zones will meet and decide when the time comes.
“So we are not afraid of zoning; we believe that zoning will not affect our party and chances of winning the 2023 presidential election,” he said.
PDP NEC meets today
Meanwhile, the National Executive Committee (NEC) of the PDP will meet today at the party’s national secretariat in Abuja, to deliberate on issues concerning the soul of the party.
Our correspondent gathered from reliable sources that the NEC will review circumstances surrounding Governor Dave Umahi’s defection to the APC, state of the nation and how to halt mass defection from its fold among others.