Clark advises PDP leaders to jettison impunity, imposition culture

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Elder Statesman, Chief Edwin Clark, has urged the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to demonstrate lessons learnt from its recent crises by jettisoning impunity and imposition that characterised its previous activities.

Clark made the call when an aspirant for national chairmanship of the party, Chief Raymond Dokpesi, visited him in Abuja on Friday night.

He said that impunity culture on the part of governors must be stopped, and pointed out that the recent leadership crisis in the party was caused by the vice.

The Ijaw leader advised that the party should embrace internal democracy in all activities, saying that such was paramount for its chances in the 2019 general elections.

“Elections are going to be held in some states and at the local government levels shortly, let there be internal democracy.

“If 10 people in a local government want to be chairman, allow them to go for the election. That is how to do it,’’ he said.

Clark also urged leaders and members of PDP to see the Convention scheduled for December as an important project of the party that would determine its future.

He described Dokpesi as courageous, transparent, fearless and the right man that PDP needed now to move forward.

Clark said that the founder of Daar Communications had remained a dedicated PDP member who did a lot for the party in 2015.

Similarly, former Niger State Governor, Alhaji Babangida Aliyu, who also hosted Dokpesi in his residence in Abuja, said that PDP needed a leader like the aspirant “and not those that will create negative image for the party’’.

Aliyu said that after the 14 months leadership crisis that rocked the party, there was need to “rebuild, re-brand and rejuvenate the party’’ ahead of the 2019 elections.

He revealed the role played by some PDP members in the formation and registration of the Advanced Peoples Democratic Alliance (APDA).

According to him, some PDP members actually thought of preparing alternative party for committed members, should the recent Supreme Court judgment become unfavourable for the party.

The former governor said that not only was it agreed by some PDP members to be involved in the registration of APDA, PDP also had discussion with 17 other political parties for coalition.

“Indeed, one of the parties gave us their papers. There are some of us who said that should the judgment not end well, we will leave PDP.

“Luckily, the judgment ended well and that alternative plan is gone,” he said.

Also consulted by Dokpesi over his aspiration was former Minister of Federal Capital Territory, Alhaji Ibrahim Bunu, who said that it was time for PDP to take over Borno, disclosing that the party had remained in opposition in the state for 18 years.

“Except for the elections in 1999, all the subsequent elections were undermined by PDP,” Bunu said.

He expressed confidence in Dokpesi’s capability to lead PDP, saying that he had demonstrated his commitment to fight peoples’ course.

“Supporting your pursuit for PDP national chairman is not for our benefit but for the party.

“We want to see PDP succeeding and that the values of the party founders are sustained.

“If these values were sustained, we will not have been where we are today,” he said.

Earlier, Dokpesi had said that he was consulting elders and leaders of the party as a peep into his ambition of leading the party as its national chairman.

He said that unity and sanity must return to PDP, adding that the party was in need of a visionary leader who was committed to the ideals and values of the founding fathers.

“We need those that will be able to build the party to make it able to face the challenges of the forthcoming 2019 general elections.”

Dokpesi said that he remained an unrepentant member of PDP, and of the Sen. Ahmed Makarfi-led National Caretaker Committee even at the peak of the crisis.

“I never compromise one second to look at Sen. Ali Modu Sheriff but I made attempt to broker peace with him,” he said.

He pledged to build a fearless team that would rebuild PDP to win 2019 elections.

Dokpesi had on Thursday, visited two former military Heads of State – Gen. Ibrahim Babangida and Gen. Abdulsalami Abubakar, in Minna.


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