Dickson, according to a statement on Sunday by his Special Adviser on Media Relations, Mr. Fidelis Soriwei, said the leadership of the PDP had a responsibility to come up with a candidate from the northern part of the country that can wrest power from the APC.
The governor advised that the leadership of the PDP should not focus all attention on the forthcoming national convention of the party scheduled for December 9, 2017.
Dickson, a former Chairman of the party’s National Reconciliation Committee, said it was important that the convention was viewed as a means to an end.
The statement quoted Dickson as making the assertion while playing host to the Chairman of DAAR Communications, Chief Raymond Dokpesi, a contestant for the position of the PDP’s national chairman, at the Government House, Yenagoa.
The governor, however, said that the convention was very important as the PDP needed its successful conduct to get things right in preparation for the 2019 elections.
Dickson said, “And let me use this opportunity to caution our party leaders across this country. I hope we are not focusing too much on this convention instead of focusing on winning federal power.
“I think we should be strategic and focused and think of how to get an acceptable candidate through a fair process too, for all the zones; in a process that is open to all the three zones of the North so that we can get somebody who would have the support to win the Presidency for us. That is the key thing.
“So, I advise that people should not see the forthcoming national convention as an end in itself. People should see it rather as a means to an end.
“Nevertheless, the convention is important because we need to get it right; the process itself must be right and the outcome should also be acceptable so that we can now move to the next stage.”
The governor expressed concern that some party members were still stuck in the old way of doing things in the PDP, insisting that the convention must be credible, transparent and devoid of manipulation.
Dickson, who also commented on the speculations about endorsement of candidates for positions in the party, stressed that only the convention had power to endorse candidates.
In his remarks, Dokpesi told his host that he was in Bayelsa to solicit the governor’s support for his quest to become the next chairman of the PDP.
He explained that he was in the race for the position of chairman in consonance with the recommendation of the 88-man committee of the party, which zoned the position of the chairman to the South and the Presidency to the North.
Dokpesi also said that the South-South, which he described as the most vulnerable geopolitical zone, deserved a committed representation, a personality of courage and vision.