BREAKING: Ebonyi lawmakers demand for S'East Presidency, give PDP 7days ultimatum to convocate NEC

Ebonyi Assembly Speaker, Rt. Hon. Francis Ogbonna Nwifuru.

By Victor Nwegede

Ahead of the Presidential elections slated to hold on February 18, 2023 by Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, the Hounourable members of Ebonyi State House of Assembly have asked the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, to zone its Presidential Position to South East Nigeria if the spirit of democracy is still living with the party.

The Speaker of the House, Rt. Hon. Francis Ogbonna Nwifuru made the request on Monday while holding a press conference at his residential quarters, Abakaliki, following the alleged plan by the lawmakers to massively defect to the ruling party at the centre, APC, with the  Ebonyi Governor, Engr. David Nweze Umahi. 

The lawmakers who were all elected under the platform of PDP, have given their party a seven (7) days ultimatum to convocate its National Executive Committee, NEC, and also to zone the position of the Presidency to the Southeast zone of the country.

The Speaker said: "We are giving our great party, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), 7 days ultimatum to convocate the National Executive Committee of the party and zone the position of the Presidency to the South East Nigeria, especially as INEC has officially announced the date of the presidential elections." 

He added that, their requests if adopted by PDP would further develop and unite the country in no minimal measure.

 Speaker Nwifuru equally advised the party to not contemplate to remove the National Chairman of the Party, Prince Uche Secondus, stressing that, "as it is customary that the zone (South) from where the National Chairman comes from, produces the Presidential Candidate of the Party.

He maintained that, if this advice is not adhered to, it will further divide and destabilize the party along sectional and regional lines and they would also take decisive actions to sustain the traditions and dividends of democracy in the party.

"Failure to adhere to these kind requests will cost our party heavily and we, the Honourable Members of the 6th Ebonyi State House of Assembly will leave no stone unturned in taking decisive actions to ensure that traditions and dividends of democracy are respected in our party," he hinted.

The two term serving state Speaker had earlier noted that, "the unity of our beloved country, Nigeria, has always been hinged on the principles of equity, justice and fairness. It is on such conventional wisdom that the country has striven to grow and develop equally across all her geopolitical zones. 

"In furtherance of the above principles, we, the Honourable Members of the sixth (6th) Ebonyi State House of Assembly, wish to draw the attention of our great Party, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), to the rightful yearning of our industrious and peace-loving people of the South East Nigeria, that the position of the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria come 29th May, 2023, be zoned to the South East. 

"Since the inception of this democracy, the zone has paid its dues having worked assiduously and massively voted for all the presidential candidates of our great party - Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), when the people of the South West in the year 1999 and 2003, the people of North West in 2007, the people of South South in 2011 and 2015, the people of the North East in 2019, all contested for Presidency. It is on record that since the inception of democracy in this country, from 1999 till date, the five (5) States of the South East have always delivered the presidential candidates of our great party, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), 100 per cent. 

"It is only appropriate in the spirit of democracy, equity, justice and fairness that the position of the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria come 2023, be zoned to the South East.

"South East has presidential personalities, people who are globally renowned, reliable, acceptable, tested and trusted to the position; having discharged their duties efficiently and effectively in the positions held before now. Persons like Peter Obi (Former PDP Vice Presidential Candidate in the 2019 elections and former Governor of Anambra State), Sen. Anyim Pius Anyim (former Senate President and former Secretary to the Government of the Federation), Sen. Ike Ekweremmadu (former 3-time Deputy President of the Senate), Sen. Theodore Orji (former Governor of Abia State), Achike Udenwa (former governor of Imo State), and a host of others. So we have qualified people who are very much available for this position. We did not mention our Governors not because they are not qualified but these highly qualified persons are not holding positions currently and there are other eminent qualified Igbo leaders as well who are trusted, competent, capable and reliable. That tells you, gentlemen of the press that we are not asking for what we don't have, so our party should not turn this request down."

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