Stakeholders of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Kogi state have warned the national leadership of the party not to toy with their resolve to resist all attempts to foist a governorship candidate on them.
They alleged that the names of elected ad-hoc delegates for the party’s governorship primary election in Kogi state have been altered to favour a particular aspirant.
The stakeholders insisted that they will help PDP lose the governorship election if the manipulation is not corrected.
Speaking at a press conference in Abuja, spokesperson of the stakeholders, Hon. Farouk Adejoh, fingered the party’s presidential candidate in the last general elections, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, in the plot to undermine Kogi primary election.
Adejoh, a former local government chairman in the state, said “Even before the start of the contest in Kogi state, PDP is undermining its own fortunes in our state. It is our party that about to defeat same party in Kogi state, not APC, by manipulating the delegates’ list. We now believe even if we go for primaries now, they will try to manipulate the process so their candidate can win.
“Their preferred candidate is one man called Daniel Melaye, alias Dino, one of the mascots of the presidential campaign. So, if somebody was a clown in your campaign and you are very pleased with his performance because he made you laugh, insulted people for you, is that enough to award the governorship ticket of our state to him?
“Who is this Melaye we are talking about? There is no record he has worked anywhere in his life. In 2007, he came around and dropped Obasanjo’s name and then Governor Ibrahim Idris gave him House of Representatives ticket. He went there and disgraced Kogi state thoroughly.
“For anybody to sit down, deny senior advocates of Nigeria and captains of industries who are seeking the party’s governorship ticket of a free contest and just hand over the ticket to Daniel Melaye because he was the mascot in your campaign shows a lot of contempt for the state we come from.
“Without mincing words, we are calling on Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, despite his denials, to rescind his support for the manipulation of our delegates’ list.”
David Oluwakayode, Chairman, Forum of Youth Leaders in Kogi state, questioned Atiku’s democratic credentials based on his alleged involvement in the manipulation of delegates’ lists for Kogi governorship primary election.
David said the party leadership has changed 185 names in the state’ delegates list, skewed to favour Melaye.
“We won’t condoned this any longer. PDP can give their ticket to whomsoever they like but we will also give our votes to whosoever we like.
“When the time comes, nobody should say they rigged Kogi elections. If the delegates’ list is not corrected, by the special grace of God, PDP will not even come third in the elections. That is a promise. We will help PDP lose the elections if they fail to correct our delegates’ list,” he said.