A group of power brokers from the North in the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) have initiated wide consultations and mobilisation ahead of the National Executive Committee (NEC) meeting of the party, on Thursday, to discuss the zoning of the post of national chairman to the North. The stakeholders behind the discreet moves, Nigerian Tribune learnt, have worked out a Plan B in their determination to checkmate those opposed to the retention of the chairmanship slot in the South.

Checks on Sunday showed that members of NEC are expected to take a final decision on the matter this week to pave way for the sale of nomination forms to prospective aspirants for elective offices in the coming weeks.

A source told Nigerian Tribune that some northern leaders hoped to use the opportunity of the meeting to draw the attention of their colleagues to the immediate and long term implications of the recommendation of the governors for the chances of PDP in the next general election.

The source said under their Plan B, the leaders were considering drafting a former Minister of Foreign Affairs, Alhaji Sule Lamido; Governor of Kwara State in the aborted Third Republic, Sha’aba Lafiagi; a former governor of Kaduna State, Ahmed Markafi as chairman if the ongoing attempt to convince NEC members on the dangers in the stand of the governors on the zoning of chairmanship to the North fails.

Part of the permutations of the leaders is that a national chairman with pedigree and influence would resist the temptations that often compel occupants of the position to work under the shadows of the governors.

He will also be encouraged to uphold the recommendation of the committee set by the Uche Secondus-led EXCO to appraise the performance of PDP in the 2019 general election that the presidential race should be thrown open to all the six geopolitical zones in the country.

The source said the decision of the governors has not in any way changed anything in the camp of former Vice President, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar; former president of the Senate, Dr Bukola Saraki and Governor Aminu Tambuwal in their speculated presidential bid.

However, the source claimed that most of the power brokers dissatisfied with the resolution of the governors on chairmanship alleged that Governor Samuel Ortom of Benue State is working against the interest of the North in its quest for the presidency.

Accordingly, the leaders have threatened to work against any candidate that may have his backing in all future elections.



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