2023: PDP zoning panel did not throw open presidential ticket – Ortom clarifies


Samuel Ortom, Benue state governor, says the zoning committee of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) did not throw open the presidential ticket of the party.


Ortom, who is the chairman of the zoning committee of the PDP, spoke on Wednesday in a statement issued by Nathaniel Ikyur, his chief press secretary.


The governor said the panel has submitted its recommendation to the national executive council (NEC) of the party for further action, adding that he was misquoted on the matter.


Ortom addressed the issue while appearing on the ‘Morning Show’ on Arise TV.


He said: “I want to clear the insinuation that the zoning committee has thrown open the presidential ticket. I did inform the media yesterday (Tuesday, April 5, 2022) that the committee has adopted a unanimous position to be presented to the national executive committee (NEC) of the party. Where did I say that the committee has thrown open the presidential ticket?


“The committee will present the report to NEC. It is the NEC that has the final authority on the zoning of positions.


“As far as the committee was concerned, there were arguments that the presidential candidate should go to the South. While some said it should go to the Northern part of the country. There were others who were of the opinion that it should be thrown open for the best candidate who will be able to deliver good governance and make Nigerians feel like human beings again.


 “As the chairman of the committee, we did not say that. So it is very wrong for anyone to insinuate that we have thrown the presidential ticket open. I am still repeating that, whatever we did, we have submitted our report to NEC. So it is wrong for the media to come out with a position despite the fact that they were not members of the committee.


“I came out to brief the media. So it is wrong completely. I did not say that. And like I said, NEC is the final authority on deciding where this position will be zoned to.


“NEC directed us that in zoning these positions, go and do it right without minding where the president will come from yet. That when the time comes for the presidential, a mandate will be given to the people and NEC will take a decision. That is what we have done.”


The governor said the PDP leadership is “working towards ensuring that the party gets it right thing this time,” adding that “preempting the committee’s work and NEC decision is not correct”.

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