17 National Assembly aspirants in Cross River State and their supporters, have given the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, 48 hours from today, September 11, 2018, to reverse her contentious decision to grant automatic tickets to all serving National Assembly members, www.calitown.com can reveal.
The 17 aspirants who staged a massive protest to the PDP Secretariat in Calabar, maintain in a petition submitted to State Chairman of the Party, Edim Inok, that “as bona fide members of the PDP, we are competent and have a right to question the ongoing attempt by the party leadership, to deny us the right to participate and be voted for, in a fair, elective contest.” They came clear too that, “we are appalled by the decision to return all serving members of the National Assembly to placate them, a few individuals, over and above the collective wish of a greater number of politically conscious Cross Riverians, thereby limiting the pool of available competent candidates from which the party can select its candidates from in the forthcoming elections.”
While they maintain that the party’s decision is dangerous, especially since the PDP was, for the first time in the fourth republic, facing a formidable opposition in the All Progressives Congress, APC, and some other parties growing stronger by the day, the PDP was reminded that, “this imposition of candidates, lack of open space and impunity railroaded our party into the implosion from which she is yet to recover from. It would appear that our party has not veered away from that ignoble course …”, they insisted.
Particularly, the aspirants were displeased with ” the arrogant, self-serving and dangerous conduct with which the party delivered the message to us and threatened that even if the aspiry are to follow all procedures under the PDP constitution and the Electoral Act, that the party will change the names and submit their preferred candidates to INEC.”
Finally, the aspirants demanded that the PDP rescinds her decision, conduct proper ward congresses, allow all aspirants to participate freely in all processes leading to the nomination of candidates or they will all take their destiny in their hands.
Inok who received the petition, appealed for calm and patience while promising to channel their grievances to the national officers of the party.
Edward Ogon, John Etim Bassey and Dorncklemz Enamhe, three of the aspirants who spoke with www.calitown.com, condemned the decision and said it was callous and undemocratic. “We cannot stomach this illegality”, Ogon voiced out.
The petition to the PDP was signed by Ekpo Okon, Edward Ogon, Bassey O. Bassey, Saviour Nyong, Dorncklemz Enamhe, Godwin Amanke, Egbai Ogbo, Emil Inyang, U. Edu, Joseph Edet, Eko Atu, Kayjay Agba, Agbiji Agbiji, John Etim Bassey, Jude Ngaji, George Ekpenyong and Godwin Nyiam.
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