The Senator Serikae Dickson led Peoples Democratic Party, PDP Appeal Panel into the Edo State Three-Man Ad-Hoc delegates election has called for a political solution to the crisis in the party but shelved the suggestion for the cancellation of the controversial election.
In a report dated February 9, 2024 submitted to the National Working Committee, NWC through the National Organsing Secretary, the panel while observing the petition of the nine aggrieved aspirants said that it further confirmed that the results from all the 192 wards were signed by only two persons, viz, the chairman of the three man ward congress committee, Governor Peter Mbah and secretary, Mr Paschal Adigwe.
While further observing the complaints of the aspirants that they were not carried along and did not participate in the ward election, however, expressed fear that the party cannot afford the cancellation of the election on the claim that there would be no time under the electoral law for a fresh election.
The appeal panel further observed that even a fresh election may not be acceptable to other stakeholders in the Edo State chapter of the party.
Upon that the panel called for a political solution involving all stakeholders including the governor.
The PDP appeal panel on the Edo State ward congress election in its recommendations signed by Senator Dickson, panel member, Hajia Inna Maryam Ciroma, CON, and Dr Akilu Sani Indabawa CON said:
- Based on the above, this Appeal Panel is not able to accede to the request for the cancellation of the exercise as, among other reasons, doing so will further escalate and widen the cracks and apprehensions within the Party. Furthermore, there is no guarantee that, the party come up with results that will be acceptable across the board if the exercise is to be repeated as requested by the 9 Governorship Aspirants.
- The national leadership led by the Acting National Chairman in conjunction with the Edo State Governor, Party Chapter and elders should immediately set in motion a process of reconciliation among all stakeholders to find a political solution and will have confidence in the process to enable all stakeholders to support whoever will eventually emerge as our candidate for the September 2024 Governorship election. The Panel strongly believes that the solution to the Edo challenges lies in genuine and honest dialogue and reconciliation.
- Accordingly, the party leadership, in addition to the efforts they have made so, should take deliberate steps to ensure that the aggrieved petitioners and other stakeholders are carried along and pacified appropriately and under-laying grievances, addressed, so that we approach the secondary election as a united family.
- The national party leadership should in the future constitute Congresses Committees in good time so that the Chairman and members of those Committees can arrive their areas of assignment in good time to interact with the Stakeholders and close ranks in order to ensure smooth and fair conduct of the Congresses. The party should avoid the fire-brigade approach as it seems to have taken place in Edo State.
- The Party should consider encouraging Congress Committees sent to states to make to deliberate efforts to carry Stakeholders along in the entire processes. The party may consider amending the relevant regulations to make this mandatory.