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Civil rights advocacy group, Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria,(HURIWA)on Thursday, slammed the Peoples Democratic Party for throwing open its presidential ticket ahead of its primaries slated for May 28 to 29 2022.
HURIWA, in a statement by its National Coordinator, Comrade Emmanuel Onwubiko, described PDP as a “huge scam” for jettisoning the zoning of the party’s presidential ticket to the Southern region, especially the South-East.
The group, which said the PDP has shown that it does not respect equity, fairness, and justice, urged Nigerians to get their Permanent Voters Card ready to oust the PDP and the All Progressives Congress should any of the party field a northern candidate at the end of their individual presidential primaries at the end of May.
The National Executive Committee of the PDP had on Wednesday night at its 96th meeting held in Abuja dumped the principle of zoning and threw the presidential slot open in 2023.
Reacting, HURIWA’s Onwubiko said, “We condemn the decision of Peoples Democratic Party to throw its presidential ticket open thus throwing the spanner in the works and campaigns of elder statesmen including Pa Ayo Adebanjo, former President Olusegun Obasanjo, Chief Edwin Clark, Ohanaeze President George Obiozor, amongst others that the PDP and the All Progressives Congress should zone the office of President to the South-East.
“PDP’s decision not to heed the wise counsel of these elder statesmen is blameworthy considering that the South-East is the only zone that has not produced a democratically elected President out of the three major ethnicities since Nigeria’s Self government after over 60 years of existence as a Sovereignty.
“Throwing the contest open has confirmed that PDP has scammed the South-East even after the zone has suffered marginalisation and exclusion from the regime of President Muhammadu Buhari.
“Since 1999, Nigeria’s fourth Republic, the South-South (Goodluck Jonathan) has been in power as Vice-President and President from 2007 to 2015. Obasanjo (South-West) was President from 1999 to 2007 while Atiku Abubakar (North-East) was his deputy for the eight years. Buhari (North-West) has been President since 2015 and would leave in 2023 while Yemi Osinbajo (also from South-West) has been his deputy.
“No South-East politician has been President or Vice-President since 1999 and before. PDP’s decision shows that itself and APC indeed plots to retain presidential powers in the North because it is likely that APC will do the same thing as PDP.
“What PDP has done shows clearly that it is indeed a 419 political contraption and our plea is that Nigerian voters who don’t have PVCs should get their cards so as to reject both PDP and APC should both feature Northern candidates for President.
“HURIWA must warn PDP that its decision will divide Nigeria in such a way that Nigeria may collapse because a lot more elite and hitherto patriotic groups and persons in the South will openly oppose the so-called ‘One Nigeria’ which is not different from ‘Yahoo-Yahoo’ mantra. The South-East should be the zone to produce President in 2023 for peace, unity and stability of Nigeria beyond 2023. Nigeria’s end is near.”