As politicians prepare for the 2019 general elections, David Ker, a professor and former Vice Chancellor, Benue State University, Makurdi, and nine others have indicated interest in the Benue governorship seat.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Mr. Ker, who is seeking to contest on the platform of the PDP, will slug it out with Terhemen Tarzoor, the party’s flag bearer in 2015, that lost to Governor Samuel Ortom.
Other aspirants include Felix Atume, Gabriel Nyitse, David Iorhemba, Paul Orhii, John Tondu, Stephen Hwande, Richard Gbawuan and Tor Iorapuu, also a professor.
NAN reports that the aspirants met with the state working committee of the party on Friday in Makurdi, to formally intimate it of their interest.
At the meeting, the PDP chairman in the state, John Ngbede, assured the aspirants and other PDP members of a free, fair and credible party primaries ahead of the 2019 elections.
Mr. Ngbede said the meeting had created a forum for interaction between the party leadership and the aspirants, adding that it would foster unity and engender healthy contest for the party’s ticket.
He promised to hold primary elections that would be accepted by all aspirants, and cautioned against desperate tactics.
“The people of Benue are desirous of returning the PDP to power in 2019; we cannot afford to disappoint them,’’ he said.
He restated the pledge by the party’s national chairman, Uche Secondus, that PDP would correct past mistakes, and called on the voters to give the party another chance.
“We have learnt a lot from our past. Impunity and imposition of candidates by party leaders will not be allowed,” he said.
The chairman advised the aspirants and their supporters to avoid negative campaigns against one another, pointing out that they were one family determined to save Benue from collapse.
NAN reports that the 10 governorship aspirants pledged their loyalty to the party, and promised to accept the outcome of the party’s primary election.
The aspirants, in separate remarks, however, stressed the need for a free, fair and transparent primary election so as to boost mutual confidence, ensure togetherness and engender co-operation. (NAN)