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Zoning Will Not Work In Rivers State– PDP Chieftain

Rivers State Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) chieftain Chief Ferdinand Alabraba has declared that the governorship ticket will not be zoned to any senatorial district or ethnic group.

Alabraba said the “no-zoning principle” is consistent with the position of the state executive committee of the party. Members of the committee include the chairmen of the 23 local government chapters, lawmakers, and other leaders.

Alabraba said, based on this position, the slot would not be zoned to any ethnic nationality, local council and district.

Alabraba, who spoke in Port Harcourt, the state capital, added: “It is not in the best interest of our party to zone or limit the selection of a governorship candidate to any zone, district or ethnic nationality. We must ensure that the party gives aspirants a level playing field.

“The prevailing circumstance demands that the party should put its best candidate forward and the only democratic avenue that is available to the PDP is to conduct primaries for aspirants.”

The PDP chieftain acknowledged the existence of an unwritten riverine/upland arrangement, which gives the ethnic groups opportunities for representations in elective offices. But, he insisted that the arrangement will deprive the PDP the chance of beating the All Progressives Congress (APC) at the polls.

He said that the PDP is in a trying time, adding that members never anticipated the defection of Governor Rotimi Amaechi from the party.

Alabraba praised the Minister of State for Education, Chief NyesomWike, for leading the party, following the exit of the governor.

He said Amaechi, his aides, pro-government contractors and friends were the PDP financial warchest before the defection.

Alabraba said: “Without Wike, the PDP would have become extinct in Rivers State. Governor Amaechi took the structure of the PDP with him to the APC. When it happened, PDP members were dejected, but they did nothing, until Wike rose up to the challenge.

“How can you run on the platform of a party without contributing to the growth and development of the party? They forget that we are in party politics. For anyone to run on the platform of the party, he or she has to identify with the party. How can they achieve their ambition, if they do not identify with the party?

“My advice to them is to come close to the party, identify with the part, contribute to the party, and mobilise support for the party so that the party can be stronger to enable them actualise their ambitions. They should also support the leadership of the party as it is today. Clearly, Wike has demonstrated unparalleled leadership that has taken the PDP to where it is today in Rivers State”.

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