By Babatope Adagba
The National Convention of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) slated for April 21 may further divide the party if the ambition of Ali Modu Sheriff, acting national chairman of the party is not curtailed. A chieftain of the party who did not want his name mentioned told Independent. “He wants the National Chairman and presidential candidate of the party at the same time.
I think it is better he settles for one of the positions and give opportunity for others.” It would be recalled that some members of the party’s Board of Trustees (BoT) who were not comfortable with the emergence of Sheriff as the party’s National Chairman, threatened to dump the party if he perpetuates himself in office beyond May 21.
But the party chieftain explained that though things may be working to Sheriff’s favour, he must make up his mind on what he wants because he cannot be party chairman now with the hope of using the office to get the presidential ticket in 2019. “Sheriff is highly respected in the party but that does not give him the whole opportunity to put the party in his kits.”
Since the appointment of the former governor of Borno State as the acting National Chairman of the party in February this year, opinion has been divided over his ability to restructure the party ahead of 2019 general elections. While some people said Sheriff is not the right person to lead the party at this critical moment in the life of the party, others believed he has the political sagacity and financial muscle to rescue the party, which suffered electoral defeat after 16 years in power at the national level.
The Emmanuel Udom committee on zoning met in Uyo, Akwa Ibom State last week and zoned the position of National Chairman to Northeast, the development many people described as Sheriff’s coup against the party. The recommendation would be examined during the meeting of PDP governors in Abuja on Tuesday.
Adamu Mu’azu, the former National Chairman of the party who resigned after the dismal performance of the party in 2015 general elections is also from the zone.