By Patrick Andrew
PDP senators protesting attempts by governors to unseat them at the senate have been told to disabuse their minds of automatic tickets because it is the electorates that will decide who represent them at the upper chamber.
The President of the Voice of Niger Delta (VOND), Hon. Ibimie Odimabo, said, in swift reaction to the current crisis between the senators who are insisting on automatic tickets from the party and some governors that are keen on replacing them in the senate.
Peoples Daily newspaper recalls that the senators had threatened to frustrate President Goodluck Jonathan’s second term ambition if he does not prevail on the party to give them automatic tickets to return to the senate.
The senators, who boycotted sessions at the plenary last week, forcing President Jonathan and the leadership of the party to hold a closed door meeting with them, yesterday held another meeting soon after the plenary ostensibly to maul further action on their demand.
Already, Governors Godswill Akpabio, of Akwa Ibom, Benue’s Gabriel Suswam, Delta’s Emmanuel Uduaghan, the Chief Servant of Niger state, Babangida Aliyu, Ibrahim Shema of Katsina, Silver Chime of Enugu, and two others, have so far declared their intention to contest the senatorial seats.
Accordingly, the serving senators from their respective constituencies consider the interests of the governors as serious threat to their jobs in the senate and therefore, wants the party to prevail on them to compel the governors, who wield considerable financial might and who control the party machinery in their respective states, to withdraw their interests.
Odimabo said rather than insists on automatic ticket, both the lawmakers and the governors should use their achievements to woo the electorates, who ultimately will decide the fate of any contestant.
“The lawmakers are crying wolf where there is none. Instead of insisting on automatic ticket, they should let their achievements in the senate speak for them. Similarly, the governors should adduce their performances in the last eight years and eventually let the people decide who represents them at the senate.
However, he cautioned against unduly heating up the polity noting that any political party has every right based their resolutions on procedures for selection of persons for elective offices to prescribe whatever process it may want to adopt to produce its flag-bearers at election.