The PDP leadership on Wednesday postponed the Kogi State gubernatorial primary over an excuse of logistic issues.
We wish to state categorically that the purported postponement of the primaries is not in the interest of the PDP nationally and particularly in Kogi State.
Postponing the Kogi State gubernatorial primaries has legal implications, which will put the party in a situation where it will be unable to field any candidate in the forthcoming gubernatorial election in Kogi State.
The INEC deadline for conclusion of gubernatorial primaries in Kogi State is Tuesday 15, September 2015. Why then has the PDP chosen to fix its primaries barely 24 hours before the deadline?
According to the INEC rules and regulations for conducting political party primaries, paragraph 8 of the document states that “A political party must submit by written communication to the headquarters of the Commission and no later than 21 days to the date of its primaries, which of the two methods direct or indirect primaries it intends to use in conducting its primaries.”
Section 17 (c) of the document stipulates that “re-scheduling of any scheduled primaries shall be by a written communication to the Commission not later than seven (7) days to the new date clearly stating the reasons for rescheduling and the new date.”
With the above provision, it is clear that the PDP cannot meet the INEC deadline for rescheduling party primaries. Hence PDP stands the risk of not being able to field a candidate in the Kogi gubernatorial election.
This development is not only untidy but appears like a concocted agenda designed by some unscrupulous elements who have infiltrated the PDP in an attempt to scuttle the chances of the PDP in the forthcoming election. We totally reject and resist it.
We therefore call on the National Working Committee of the PDP to immediately rescind this retrogressive decision and proceed with the primaries on Thursday September 10, 2015 as originally scheduled.
Anything short of this will be tantamount to putting the PDP in a situation of further chaos, internal party friction and disintegration.
Usman Okai Austin
PDP Youth Frontier