The Peoples Democratic Party has said that all aspirants to elective offices in 2015 from the party, including President Goodluck Jonathan, must purchase their forms of intent latest by October 30.
The party said that all aspirants, including those angling to become the President, governors, senators and others, must show interest in the race by purchasing forms before they could stand for election or the party’s primaries.
The National Publicity Secretary of the party, Chief Olisa Metuh, stated this while speaking with journalists on the outcome of the meeting of the members of the National Working Committee of the party in Abuja on Wednesday.
Metuh also debunked the allegation by a group from the Niger Delta, who said they were at the party secretariat to purchase presidential nomination form for the President but were turned back.
Members of the group said they were ready to pay the N22m for the form on behalf of the President, but regretted that the NWC had refused to sell the form to them.
Metuh said he was not aware of that, adding that any group willing to purchase form for anyone was free to do so.
He added that the President, even though was adopted as the sole presidential candidate of the party, must purchase form before he could be recognised as the party’s candidate.
Metuh said, “We are not aware of it. We have not been informed of any group that wants to buy form for Mr. President. We are not yet aware. I am just hearing it for the first time.
“Groups have come to purchase forms for senators and governors. I don’t think that the NWC is against anybody coming to purchase form for the President.
“We know that the President has not declared and he has not signified that he is going to contest. He has not given answer to the yearnings of Nigerians but at the same time, the NWC will not be against any group that wants to purchase form for him. I think they are dealing with the wrong channel.”
Speaking specifically on whether the President needed to pick form despite the fact that he had been adopted as the sole candidate of the party, Metuh said he had to.
“The Constitution of the party stipulates that there will be a national convention, where decisions or memos from the National Executives will either be approved or rejected and there is no way that you can go to a presidential election and say you are adopting or electing someone who has not bought the form.
“The 30th of October for purchase of forms will not be extended and it is applicable to all candidates. That date and time would not be changed.”
It will be recalled that the members of the National Executive Committee of the party had, at its meeting on September 18, adopted Jonathan as its sole presidential candidate.
Before then, other arms of the party, such as the National Caucus, Board of Trustees and the Governors Forum, had adopted the President.
However, a member of the PDP, who is the son of Nigeria’s First Republic Prime Minister, Dr. Abdul-Jhalil Tafawa-Balewa, said he would contest the 2015 presidential election on the platform of the party.
Tafawa-Balewa also condemned what he described as a plot by the leadership of the party to demoralise other presidential aspirants by adopting Jonathan as the sole presidential candidate of the party.
It was, however, not clear if the aspirants would still show up at the party’s national secretariat to pick the presidential nomination form.
Still speaking on the outcome of the NWC meeting, Metuh announced that the party had granted waiver to an unspecified number of returnees and defectors to the party.
The waiver, he said, was granted to enable these set of people to participate in the forthcoming ward delegates’ conference.
“All party members are free to participate in ward delegates’ congress,” he added.
He said the requirement for waiver did not apply to people who were board members or board chairmen occupying such committee positions.
Metuh said, “We are granting the waiver because we have noted that some chapters are planning to say that some people are either returning or they are new members and cannot contest to be delegate but the issue of three-man delegate is an adhoc, because immediately after the convention, national or local government delegate, upon the end of the congress, the delegate ceases.
“The waivers that the NWC is dealing with is the ones for the House of Assembly, the House of Representatives, Senate and governorship and presidential seats. Those are the waivers that we are looking at, not issue of delegates.
“All party members, new and returning members, are free to participate in the ward delegate congress.”
By Edos News