A contender to the office of the National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Professor Taoheed Adedoja, at the weekend stated that the Party’s December elective national convention would be a test case for removal of impunity and imposition of candidates for elections
The one-time Minister of Sports and Youths Development stated this while speaking with newsmen on Sunday in Abuja about his ambition of becoming the PDP National Chairman.
He said that the method that would be used to provide the outcome of the December convention that would be political laboratory for testing the democratic credentials of the PDP.
According to him, “If the December election into all the national leadership positions is democratic and the delegates decide who their officers are, it is then the process for the elections of candidates for the party will be gotten right.
“So, when we get right the national convention, then PDP has gotten it right.”
The one-time Provost of the Federal College of Education (Special Oyo) disclosed that the party lost in the 2015 general elections not because it did not do well in providing the dividends of democracy to Nigerians, in terms of infrastructure, social and economic development but because of impunity and imposition of candidates
According to him, “the 16 years of PDP administration enabled it to make positive impacts on the lives of Nigerians virtually in all sectors of the economy, as a result of manifesto it provided for the people of this country.
Adedoja said that the PDP would have ruled beyond 16 years, but its administration was truncated majorly because of impunity, imposition of candidates, and processes by which some of its candidates emerged.
According to him, PDP has learnt its lessons and it is now ready to do the right thing by ensuring Level playing ground for everybody aspiring.”
He added that PDP lost power not because Nigerians were not satisfied with it, but because they were promised changes “but after two years Nigerians want PDP to come back in 2019 to rule and rule better.”
Adedoja said to regain power in 2019, there must be better processes through which the party’s leaders and flag bearers would emerge.
The former minister said he was “the fresh face” PDP needs, especially now that the party wants to give Nigerians fresh ideas to consolidate on its 16 years achievements.
According to him, “to lead a party like PDP that is the biggest party in Africa will require a person with thorough understanding of the political thinking and orientation of Nigerians.
“In the modern Nigeria of today, you cannot succeed as the chairman of the party, without understanding the historical antecedents, the cultural value of different value of different parts of Nigeria.
“The social economic needs of Nigerians transcend the reading of the pages of newspaper or books. You must have had the experience of personal relationship with different parts of the country.
“That is why I stand out to offer this service as a true Nigerian who has built friends and associate across all Nigeria.”
The Aspirant stated that as a Nigerian from Oyo State born in Kano State, he had lived and worked in different parties of Nigeria in the course of his studies and carrying out national and international assignments.
He said that as a loyal PDP member he had never been associated with any case of violence, anti-party activity or violation of any party rules and guidelines.
According to him, “I have not been involved in igniting any problem or crisis in PDP either at the ward, local government, state or national level.”
He added that in his desire to lead the party, he had been making wide consultation with PDP stakeholders in over 30 states, saying “I am satisfied with the feedback.”
According to Adedoja, “also in the last seven months, I have been moving round the country to learn my hands in the various reconciliation efforts of the party by making personal contacts.”
When elected as PDP national Chairman, I will set in motion, machinery that will ensure that the party’s representatives emerge without imposition.
He added that when elected, he also had a 15-point focus would help in discharging his duties, which include providing the needed leadership for re-positioning and re-branding of PDP.
Others were to lead the party to present a winning presidential candidate for the 2019 election and winning candidates for all elective positions.
According to him, “Part of my focus will also be promotion of party sustainability at the ward, local government, state and national level, through viable business ventures and investments
“Ensuring party internal democracy and party discipline as well as implementing standard financial regulations that conform to international best practices on transparency and accountability.”
He also pledged to work with the party’s leaders and stakeholders including the governors in deploying innovative and fresh ideas for party membership drive and on other party issues.