Published On: Thu, Dec 7th, 2017

PDP Convention: Atiku may not be allowed to vote

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  • Raises alarm, says APC planning to disrupt the event

By Lateef Ibrahim

Forty-eight hours to the conduct of its elective national convention, the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, hinted that former Vice President Atiku Abubakar, who recently rejoined the PDP from the APC, may not be allowed to vote at the party’s convention holding at the Eagle square, Abuja on Saturday.
The opposition party also raised alarm that some elements within the ruling All Progressives Congress, APC, are trying by any means to disrupt the convention.
The Publicity Secretary of the National Caretaker Committee, NCC, of the PDP, Prince Dayo Adeyeye disclosed this at a press briefing in Abuja.
Speaking on the issue of whether Atiku Abubakar will be allowed to vote at the Saturday’s convention, the party’s Spokesman said the former Vice President, Atiku Abubakar, will be part of the convention, and he will even make a speech at the venue; stressing, however, that he may not be voting at the convention.
According to Adeyeye, “All you need to do is pick up the constitution of the Party and see whether Atiku is qualified to vote or not”.
When pressed further, he said: “First of all, I can tell you that we are happy with Atiku coming back to the PDP. It’s very exciting for all of us. It’s a good omen to everybody in the PDP.
“He was one of the founding fathers, one of those who built this party; and he’s coming back home. His room was never occupied; so we have opened it for him.
He will be part of this convention. He will even make a speech at the convention but he may not be voting at the convention”, he pointed out.
Section 8 of the PDP constitution entitled ‘Procedure for Rejoining’, says, “A person who desires to rejoin the party after leaving it shall: (a) apply to his Ward Secretary for re-admission; and (b) unless given waiver by the National Working Committee, be placed on probation for a period of not less than one year”.
Section 9 of the same constitution says: “Subject to the provision of Section 8(b) a member on probation shall have the right to attend all meetings of the Party, but shall not be entitled to vote at such meetings, nor shall he be eligible to contest for elective office on the platform of the Party”.
On the alarm raised by the party over plan to disrupt its convention, Adeyeye said, “I want to draw your attention to an issue that bothers us. We have credible information that some overzealous elements in the government are trying by any means to disrupt the convention of the PDP; to make sure this convention does not hold successfully.
The party was however quick to exonerate President Muhammadu Buhari from the said grand design to disrupt it’s convention.
“We have no evidence that the President is aware of this. It is happening and we are calling on him to do his own investigation and to call those who are trying to cause this problem to desist, because it is capable not only of destroying this democracy but also capable of destroying the country.
“They have been trying every effort, but we are happy that we have no information that it is coming from the very top. But some overzealous elements in the administration are bent on causing trouble for us. It is a very credible information; and they are doing everything possible to make sure that this convention is disrupted.
Adeyeye pointed out that the governing APC is afraid that if the PDP should hold a successful convention, their days in government are numbered.
“They are afraid that if the PDP should hold a successful convention, that their days in government are numbered. By the time we hold this convention and our officers are elected and they take office next year; there will be a floodgate of people even from APC to the PDP.”
The opposition party thus called on President Buhari to carry out his investigation as well as call those who are trying to cause the problem to desist because “it is capable not only of destroying this democracy but also capable of destroying the country.
“This is a credible information and that is why we are appealing to President Muhammadu Buhari to please rein in his aides.

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