Soon after the March 28, 2015 presidential elections where the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) conceded defeat to the ruling party, the All Progressives Congress (APC), a majority of memebers and supporters of APC hurriedly declared the PDP dead, saying the defeat it suffered at the presidential poll was only the final blow dealt it to see to its interment once and for all.
In fact, some analysts also jumped on the bandwagon and declared that PDP had not only lost the elections but also the voice of a virile opposition party which it was expected to play following the outcome of the presidential poll and the internal wranglings that followed. There was then a loud call for a new party to lead the opposition in Nigeria.
However, just about nine months into the life of the Buhari-led administration, the PDP has not only proven to be alive and kicking, it has lived up to the billings of a vibrant, fearless and irrepressible opposition party to the extent that the ruling APC, in a bid to curtail and send fears into the camp of PDP, falls many times into constitutional errors that keeps making it unpopular among the citizens.
In the face of consistent pervading darkness, persistent fuel scarcity, paralysing economy leading to massive job losses, business closures, free fall of the naira, loss of foreign investments, continued declining stock market, abuse of executive power, disobedience of court orders among other grave socio-economic and anti-democratic tendencies which Nigerians are now forced to live with, the least the citizens expect from Buhari and his APC government is to urgently arrest these ugly situations rather than arrest harmless perceived political enemies on frivolous charges.
This situation has, no doubt, been killing the APC and the Buhari administration by instalments. The PDP which they all declared dead barely a year ago with braggadocious audacity appears to be growing bigger and stronger by the day.
The elections conducted after May 29, 2015, when President Buhari was sworn in prove that the notion that the PDP is dead following the last presidential election was nothing but a fallacious contrivance of a ruling party basking in the premature euphoria of a dream government without opposition or dissenting voices.
From Bayelsa to Benue, Abia, Taraba, Rivers and Kogi, the story has been the same. Almost all the re-run elections held in these states have been won by PDP.
In Bayelsa state, PDP won the December 5, 2015 governorship election. It was the same story in the Benue South Senatorial District re-run which David Mark won. In Kogi State, the story is not different as the party also won the Kogi Central Senatorial District as it did the Abia North Senatorial District and Taraba State where the party cleared all the re-runs held for the Sardauna/Kurmi/Gashaka Federal Constituency, Mbamnga and Ardo Kola State Constituencies.
Although results from the Rivers State re-run elections have not been concluded at the time of writing this piece, the ones declared by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) have seen PDP winning all.
So, throughout the federation, the PDP has continued to show that it is the party to beat. The party might have cashed in on the grossly ineffective implementation of the ruling party’s “Change” mantra which has left Nigerians more despondent now than ever before.
To sustain their gains, the PDP must not rest on their oars but must continue to provide the dividends of democracy to its people wherever they are privileged to govern them. The performances of its governors must continue to outshine those of the ruling party to serve, first, as a wake up call for the ruling party who seem to be taking its victory at the federal level for granted, so that a healthy competition would be engendered between the two leading parties while the people become the ultimate beneficiaries of such competition.
Second, it would serve as an avenue to increase the party’s chances of seamlessly regaining control of power at the federal level.
In all of these, the PDP must be commeneded for remaining resolute despite the many challenges facing it even including some disagreements within its ranks. It must quickly resolve whatever is left of any disagreement among its leading members and ensure its ultimate survival and rebound by delivering democracy dividends to the people while defending the tenets of democracy against every form of draconian leadership. Certainly, PDP is not dead but alive and still waxing stronger!
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