Bayelsa state Governor, Seriake Dickson has warned against imposition of candidates at the national convention of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) slated for December 9.
Dickson, former chairman of the PDP reconciliation committee, in a statement by his Chief Press Secretary, Francis Agbo, stated that the forthcoming convention was crucial to the survival of the party.
“In cases where party stakeholders/delegates are unable to reach a consensus on any position, the party should allow all aspirants who have bought nomination forms to test their popularity on the convention ground”, he said.
Dickson noted that it was by creating a level-playing field for all aspirants in a transparent convention that the PDP would be stronger and more cohesive, adding that the party should do everything to avoid another round of crisis.
He said Nigerians were eager about the the forthcoming convention and a successful presidential primary in 2018.
The statement continued: “The next convention is critical to the survival of the party. My position is that the party should organise an all-inclusive, transparent, acceptable, and credible convention that would rebrand the PDP and show our platform as a truly democratic party.
“Therefore, I am against all forms of manipulations, intimidations, blackmail and imposition of candidates. For me, there should be no imposition at all. I will not be a party to the adoption of anybody for any office unless it is by consensus of the zone in which the position has been zoned. If there is more than one contestant for a position, they should be given the opportunity to test their popularity at the convention.”
“A leader, no matter how highly placed, should not take the place of the convention and the powers of the delegates to the convention. Therefore, on the position of chairman and other offices, once there is more than a contestant, PDP leaders and members should be free to canvass for any candidate of their choice; nobody should quarrel with that.”