By Lateef Ibrahim, Abuja
The Chairman of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) post-convention reconciliation committee and Governor of Bayelsa State, Hon Henry Seriake Dickson, has harped on the need for the party to deepen internal democracy and returning the party to the Nigerian people.
This, Dickson reasoned, will help the PDP to regain its pride of place and wrest power from the ruling All Progressives Congress, APC, in the forthcoming general elections.
The Bayelsa Governor, who stated this while submitting the report of the reconciliation committee to the National Working Committee of PDP on Wednesday night, added that the party needs to pay special attention to the South-West region ahead of 2019.
He further said that it was imperative for the National Working Committee of the party to constitute all statutory committees urgently and in the composition, women, youths and leaders should be involved in the committees.
According to him, the South West is too strategic not to play a role in PDP.
In the words of the Bayelsa State governor, ‘‘We believe the National Convention has come and gone but we recommend that the party deliberately create positions for women in PDP because the party is the most women and youth –friendly. Mr. Chairman if we do this, it will reassure our women and youths that they are the future of our party.
“There is no party as democratic as PDP in Nigeria but I must concede that we are not where we should be, but by deepening internal democracy and returning the party to the Nigerian people, the party will regain its pride of place and wrest power from the APC.
‘‘PDP National Working Committee and its leaders must be temperate, not join issues with ourselves and even those who have left the party.
“The manifest destiny of PDP is to lead a broad-based coalition to sack APC and to achieve this, everybody is important and must be brought on board because the umbrella is large enough for all.
‘‘The National Working Committee of our great party should constitute all statutory committees urgently and in the composition, women, youths and leaders should be involved in the committees.
“The South West is too strategic not to play a strategic role in PDP. We recommend closer interaction with the leaders of the South West to build confidence in the region,” he said.
He equally charged the national leadership of PDP to commence ground work that will position the party to spearhead the broad base coalition that will defeat the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) in 2019.
The governor, who stressed that the manifest destiny of PDP is to form a coalition to rescue the country, also told the party to caution it’s leaders against making inflammatory statements that could affect the reconciliation process within their fold.
Dickson had led a post convention reconciliation committee which met with aggrieved aspirants and members of PDP. However, some of founding members of the party who still felt aggrieved with goings on in the party, especially former ministers Prof Jerry Gana and Tunde Adeniran, have moved to the Social Democratic Party (SDP) which is being touted as the rainbow coalition ahead of the 2019 general election.
While presenting the report to PDP national chairman, Prince Uche Secondus, the Bayelsa governor, said part of their recommendation, having met party chieftains across the country is for the party to assume the broad base coalition that will sack the APC in 2019.
He stressed that the party has to “Deepen our interaction in the south west to send the message that PDP has interest there and let them know no zone will be left out.”
Responding on behalf of the NWC, Prince Uche Secondus assured that PDP under his watch is ready to join hands with other parties to ensure that the country is rescued from the APC.
While noting that the party is re-branding and that the party is open to everyone, Secondus said “Our resolve is to build the youths who are the future leaders.”
He assured the governor and his committee that their report will be adopted and will stand as point of reference for the party under his leadership.