Breaking News! Jonathan’s Candidate,Bamanga Tukur Emerges PDP National Chairman
President Goodluck Jonathan’s annointed candidate for the chairmanship position of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Alhaji Bamanga Tukur has emerged as the national chairman of the party in its national convention which is still ongoing in the nation’s capital, Abuja.
Tukur had been roundly defeated at the party’s North East zonal congress in Bauchi last Wednesday. Musa Babayo had been elected as the zone’s consensus candidate for the chairmanship position in a move that jolted both Tukur and Mr Jonathan.
The PDP had zoned the party’s chairmanship slot to the North-East leading to the emergence of 11 candidates.
The candidates are ex-Governor of the defunct Gongola State, Alhaji Bamanga Muhammed Tukur; the National Publicity Secretary of PDP, Prof. Rufai Alkali; ex-Minister of Commerce, Ambassador Idris Waziri(Taraba); ex-Minister of Agriculture, Alhaji Shettima Mustapha; the National Secretary of the PDP, Musa Babayo; ex-Minister of Agriculture, Alhaji Adamu Bello; a former National Chairman of the defunct The Grassroots Democratic Movement, (GDM), Alhaji Gambo Lawan(Borno); ex-Governor Adamu Mu’azu of Bauchi State; and a former Special Adviser to the President on National Assembly Matters, Senator Abba Aji, a former Minister of FCT, Bunu Sheriff, and Barrister Ibrahim Birma. But of the 11 candidates, Tukur is the favourite candidate of President Jonathan.
After the Wednesday’s revolt against Jonathan, the presidency and leaders of the party moved swiftly to douse the tension within the last 48 hours during which series of agreements were reached between the president and PDP governors, a development that eventually led to the emergence of Tukur as the party’s sole candidate for the chairmanship position following the stepping down of 10 other aspirants for the position.
Findings have revealed that the emergence of Bamanga Tukur as the Chairman of the PDP at the party’s convention today was a fall out of a last minute meeting at the presidential villa yesterday night between Mr Jonathan and governors from the North East zone.An indication that truce had been reached was obvious at the arrival of President Jonathan at the Eagles Square venue of the party’s convention at 11.30 a.m.local time when he came in company of some North East governors including Governor Murtala Nyako of Adamawa and Mr Tukur.
Soon after the Chairman of the party’s Electoral Panel, Dr. Haliru Bello,addressed the gathering, former Defence Minister, Alhaji Shettima Mustapha, announced the withdrawal all 10 aspirants contesting the party’s chairmanship position, leaving only Tukur in the race.
Other aspirants for position of National Secretary followed suit as they equally mounted the podium to formally withdraw from the race leaving former Osun State governor, Olagunsoye Oyinlola, to emerge as national secretary of the party.
Among those who announced their withdrawal were Chiefs Ebenezer Babatope, Bola Oluojo, Prof Taoheed Adedoja, Mr. Olademeji Fabiyi, Demola Daramola and former deputy governor Lagos State, Femi Pedro.
Babatope premised his withdrawal on his belief in party supremacy, stressing that ” I am withdrawing not for any person but for the party, the PDP and honor for Mr. President. The party is supreme and I respect the supremacy of the party. I am withdrawing for nobody but the party”, while Prof Adedoja added that “I am considering the interest of the party, inspite of support from across the country, the party is supreme; I am withdrawing in the interest of peace and development of the party”.
Other national officers that emerged at the convention include Chief Olisa Metuh and Mrs. Kema Chikwe for the position of National Publicity Secretary and National Woman Leader respectively while Alhaji Abubakar Mustapha emerged as National Organising Secretary, Jaja Sam Sam as Deputy National Chairman and Owei Solomon Owei as Deputy National Secretary.