All Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) aspirants in Adamawa state have been summoned to a meeting with President Goodluck Jonathan today in Abuja.
The notice of summon for the meeting, scheduled to hold in the State House was communicated by the National Secretary of the PDP, Professor Wale Oladipo.
According to the notice, any of the aspirants who fails to attend the meeting will do so at the expense of his ambition.
Although no clear agenda for the meeting was given, reliable sources said the meeting might not be unconnected to the poor showing of the preferred candidate of the PDP for the Adamawa governorship race, Nuhu Ribadu, during the Monday’s party congress which held in Yola.
The party was worried that unless it prevails on all the aspirants to step down for Ribadu, the former anti-corruption Czar may fail woefully at the primary election, slated for Saturday, September 6, in Yola.
It would be recalled that a PDP screening committee headed by Ibrahim Mantu cleared the former Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, (EFCC), Nuhu Ribadu; former Military administrator of Lagos and Borno states, Buba Marwa; and Former Executive Secretary of the Universal Basic Education Commission, (UBEC), Ahmed Modibbo for the poll.
Others are, former Political Adviser to President Goodluck Jonathan, Ahmed Gulak; former Presidential aide, Umar Ardo; former acting governor, James Barka; Andrawus Sawa, and former Senator Abubakar Girei. Also cleared are former Minister of External Affairs, Idi Hong; Awwal Tukur, Markus Gundiri, Jerry Kumdisi and Aliyu Kama.
The committee screened the aspirants to ascertain their commitment and loyalty to the party, verify their membership cards and party dues, as well as tax clearance among other issues.
But the committee had disqualified Acting Gov.Umaru Fintiri, explaining that allowing the Adamawa State acting governor to contest its primary on Saturday, ahead of the state’s governorship poll in October, would contravene the Constitution. He was later cleared.
The party stated that Gov. Fintiri’s disqualification was a decision taken on moral grounds and along constitutional lines.
But in a swift reaction to the meeting with President Jonathan today, Fintiri the new man in the governorship seat of Adamawa State in North-East Nigeria declared that nobody will step down for Ribadu.
He spoke though his Chief Press Secretary who said, “Nobody will step down for Ribadu because all permutations are in favour of Fintiri”. Fintiri a former Speaker of the state House of Assembly had also been embroiled in disagreements with Ahmed Modibbo, who was reported to have stepped down for him.
Madibbo has since debunked the reports and also declared his resolve not step down for any candidate.
The meeting between the president and Adamawa governorship aspirants was therefore conceived to create a level playing ground for Ribadu to carry the PDP flag come October 11, 2014 when in governorship by-election in Adamawa State holds.
Meanwhile the All Progressives Congress, APC seems to have cleared the ground to give PDP a good run in the October bye election. The party on Monday, concluded screening of all seven aspirants at the state secretariat of the party in Yola.
Seven aspirants participated in the exercise which was said to be hitch free..
Chairman of the Screening Committee, Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, told newsmen after the exercise which ended on Monday night that the aspirants orderly and complied with the party’s rules and regulations.