The South West geopolitical zone was the biggest loser from the PDP national electibve conventon last weekend. For months before the convention, it was expected that the zone will produce the party’s next chairman, having not previously held the role in the past.
Ultimately, Uche Secondus from the South South beat candidates from the South West to the chairmanship and there have been several analysis on how the South West so spectacularly lost out in the PDP.
The former chairman of the National Caretaker Committee of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Senator Ahmed Makarfi, who handed over yesterday, has shared his own thoughts on the matter. Makarfi spoke on Monday in a Channels TV interview, highlighting three broad factors that hindered the South West:
- The general consensus of the other regions did not favour the South West.Makarfi dismissed the narrative that a unity list was imposed on delegates at the convention, saying the outcome of the convention was a result of consensus building.
“Nobody had a list going to the polling unit. Every delegate had his ballot paper and at each polling unit, names of those standing for the election were there. And delegates looked at that and made their choice.
“Before the convention, people were going round and campaigning and some states changed their mind. So the issue of any particular list may be an issue of a state or zone which had come to a decision that this was where we were going.”
- The South West did not get its house in order early enough, and even then, they remained in disarray.According to him, the region did not really have a consensus candidate, despite the fact that five candidates from the region had withdrawn and adopted Prof. Tunde Adeniran.
“For the South-west, it was at the convention venue that they resolved on a consensus candidate. And even then, another candidate came to the state box and met the leaders and said, look they never resolved and that he was still in the race. So, it was total confusion.
“Somebody signs on behalf of other candidates and says ‘we now have a consensus candidate and please support him’, and another goes round saying, ‘no, we don’t have a consensus candidate’.”
It is unclear who Makarfi was referring to.
The actions and negative campaigning of “one individual”.
Again, Makarfi did not elucidate on who the individual is. He however blamed the said individual for the inability of the entire region to unite.
“The whole issue of the South-west was its inability to put itself in order in good time. And then allowing some characters that could not stand up in terms of credibility to occupy the political and media landscape.
“And we cautioned them that that negative campaign by one individual was damaging them as a people and members of the PDP, and they needed to call that person to order. Still, they never called him to order. And as far as I know, 90 per cent of PDP members that person comes to will run away.”