From Obinna Odogwu, Awka
Eleven groups mobilising support for the presidential aspiration of the former governor of Anambra State, Mr Peter Obi, have asked the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) to zone its 2023 presidential ticket to the southern part of the country.
They said that the party’s earlier decision to throw the contest open was against its constitution which supports the rotation of power between the north and the south. They asked the party to rescind that decision and zone its presidential ticket to the south, particularly the South East.
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The support groups, which embarked on a nationwide march to drum support for the former governor, told the party to consider their stand as doing so would be in its best interest.
In Anambra, the groups marched from the popular Alex Ekwueme Square through the major streets to the party’s state secretariat at Udoka Housing Estate where they delivered a letter to the party’s administrative secretary for onward transmission to the national chairman of the party, Dr Iyorchia Ayu.
Coordinator for Peter Obi Support Network in Anambra, and coordinating chairman of all Peter Obi support groups, Mr Ikechukwu Anonye, who presented the letter urged the party to be fair to Ndigbo who have been supporting the party since it came into existence.
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The letter reads in part: “Recall that the South East has been a home for the PDP and we have consistently supported and voted for our party since 1999 and that largely accounts for the reason we are grossly marginalised by the Buhari/APC – led federal government.
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“We are hereby calling on the leadership of our great party to adhere to the policy of zoning and rotation of both party and elective offices, especially presidential nomination, for the sake of equity, justice and fairness as referenced in Chapter 1, Section 7, Clause 3c of the PDP constitution.
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“We are, however, still certain that our party will reconsider the option of allowing the South East to produce the next president of Nigeria, especially in the person of Mr Peter Obi, considering a consensus option as an alternative, given the age-long marginalisation”.
Addressing reporters at the PDP secretariat, Anonye said the solidarity walk was to let the PDP know that they were aware of the schemings going on in the party to deny the South the presidential ticket.
He said: “We know that the PDP has a constitution that supports rotation of the presidency between the North and the South, and now that it is the turn of the South, and precisely the South East, we are hearing that a committee has met and thrown it open for everybody. We consider it a level of injustice in the South East.
“We want to register our support for him and to let the party know that any unjust action will not be accepted by Nigerians. We want them to revert to the South East or the south in general and we know that they can rescind that decision.
“If the party fails to zone the ticket to the South East, PDP should forget it. Peter Obi is acceptable across Nigeria and if he is this accepted and they decide to disenfranchise him, then it spells doom for the party in 2023”.