201 aspirants scramble for PDP governorship tickets

Posted by News Express | 2 May 2022 | 567 times

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•PDP Headquarters, Abuja


Across the country, a total of 201 aspirants are scrambling for governorship tickets of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the 2023 gubernatorial election, it has been learnt. 

The governorship positions of all but a few states which have off-season polls including Edo, Osun and Ekiti, are up for grabs in next year’s election. Most of the aspirants have been screened at their zones and cleared to contest while those disqualified have been advised to go to appeal. 

The PDP now controls 13 states which is a far cry from the 31 states it governed in 2014. 

Three of the incumbent governors in their first term including Seyi Makinde (Oyo), Bala Mohammed (Bauchi) and Ahmadu Fintiri (Adamawa) are eligible to re-contest and both the Oyo governor and his Adamawa counterpart have already been cleared for the exercise. 

It is not clear if Mohammed, who is bidding to get the presidential ticket of the PDP, also has a back-up in seeking a return as governor of Bauchi State. 

Meanwhile, at least 17 members of the National Assembly have indicated interest in the governorship seats in their respective states, it has been discovered. 

The list includes a number of lawmakers currently holding key and strategic positions in both the Senate and the House of Representatives. 

Some of them include ranking lawmakers, while others are only serving their first term in the National Assembly. 

As at the last count, 10 serving members of the ninth Assembly have joined the race for the ticket of their parties for 2023, especially where the governors are serving out their second terms. In the buildup to party primaries, more senators have indicated interest to contest, with a number of the aspirants facing stiff opposition due to zoning arrangements, minority question, and disposition of their governors towards their bid. 

Among the senators that have joined the governorship contest is Senator IbrahimGobir (APC-Sokoto East), Senator Bassey Akpan, from Akwa Ibom State. 

Akpan is running on the platform of PDP, the same party with outgoing Governor Udom Gabriel Emmanuel, who has since anointed one of his commissioners for the position. 

Senator Ahmad Babba Kaita, representing Katsina North, who is one of the governorship aspirants in Katsina State, is said not to be finding things easy because of alleged unfavourable disposition of those in authority to his bid. 

The face-off with Governor Aminu Masari has led him to defect from the APC to PDP, accusing the APC government of marginalisation. 

Senator Abaribe Eyinnaya, the Senate Minority Leader representing Abia South is also in the quest for a governorship seat, despite the agitation by some forces that he does not qualify based on zoning arrangement for elective offices in the state. 

His governorship ambition may run into bad water if those championing zoning arrangement are allowed to have their way as Abaribe was said to come from the same zone with the incumbent governor of Abia, Dr Okezie Ikpeazu. 

Also in the governorship race is Senator Ike Ekweremadu, a two-term deputy president of the Senate and currently representing Enugu West in the Senate. 

He is currently fighting a political battle of his life as PDP leaders in the state have zoned the ticket out of his zone. 

The lawmaker is however insisting that there was nothing like zoning of political offices in the state and promised to move ahead with his aspiration. 

Another prominent lawmaker said to be eying the governorship seat is Senator Teslim Folarin and Senator Abdulfatai Buhari, representing Oyo Central and Oyo North respectively and of the APC. 

Equally in the race is Senator Obinna Ogba representing Ebonyi Central on the platform of PDP and is said to take the advantage of the exit of governor David Umahi to the APC who is seeking to contest for the presidency. 

The list of the 11 serving members of the ninth House of Representatives that have expressed interest in contesting for the governorship seats in their states include Abdulrazak Namdas, member representing Jada/ Ganye/MayoBelwa/Toungo Federal Constituency of Adamawa State. He is a political ally of former Vice President, Atiku Abubakar. 

Honourable Onofiok Luke, the current chairman of the House Committee on Federal Judiciary wants to run on the ticket of PDP, just like Honourable Balarabe Salame, member representing Illela/ Gwadabawa Federal Constituency of Sokoto State, who wants to succeed Tambuwal in Sokoto State in 2023. 

He is the incumbent Chairman, House Committee on Reformatory Institutions in the 9th Assembly and is seeking the ticket of the APC. 

Others in the House seeking governorship tickets are: Enyong Okon, member representing Uyo/Uruan/NsitAtai/Asutan/Ibesikpo Federal Constituency of Akwa Ibom; Honourable Anayo Edwin, member representing Ezza North/Ishielu of Ebonyi State. Alhassan Ado-Doguwa, the current Majority Leader of the House is believed to be nursing a governorship bid in Kano State; while Sha’aban Sharada representing Kano Municipal Constituency declared his interest to join the race for the governorship seat in the state. 

Sharada is a member of the G7, a factional APC in Kano led by Ibrahim Shekarau, former Kano State Governor and serving Senator representing Kano Central Senatorial district. 

Herman Hembe, a fourth-term lawmaker who got his mandate several times on the platforms of the PDP, APC and All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) has formally expressed interest in succeeding Governor Samuel Ortom in Benue State while Honourable Benjamin Kalu, member representing Bende Federal Constituency of Abia State is said to be nursing a similar ambition. Honourable Farah Dagogo, member representing Degema/Bonny Federal Constituency in Rivers State is also keen on governorship of his state. (Nigerian Tribune)

Source: News Express

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