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Utomi heads mega party , seek filing as SDMP

By Kelechi Okoronkwo, Abuja
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THE mega party movement yesterday in Abuja formally metamorphosed into the Social Democratic Mega Party (SDMP).

The new party vowed to displace the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the 2011 elections.

Members of the party, after a meeting yesterday in Abuja, regretted that the PDP-led government had impoverished the country.

The SDMP also named Prof. Pat Utomi as its temporary National Chairman.

Among participants at yesterday's meeting of the party were former Secretary to the Government of the Federation and one-time Finance Minister, Chief Olu Falae, Chief Ayo Adebanjo, Chief Supo Shonibare, Alhaji Adegboyega Kaka, Senator Suleiman Salau, Dr. Dapo Oyewunmi, Chief Hammed Adekunle, Kenneth Udenze and Chief Robson Momoh, who represented Chief Anthony Enahoro.

Utomi said the desire of the party was to pull Nigeria out of the political bondage which he said the country had been enmeshed in under the current ruling class.

His words: "We are determined to create a new movement that would result in a political party that can pull Nigeria out of bondage. We are committed to ending this season of mis-governance that has left Nigeria in a crippled state.

"Uncompromising in our desire, we are determined to open the gate of partisan politics to the Nigerian people broadly. Political parties should not be cabals, political parties should certainly not be exclusive, they should be open."

"This is why we have come together, committed to uproot the legacy of the PDP. Poverty is so pervasive in Nigeria today. It was not always this way."

The Interim National Chairman of the SDMP pointed out that lack of accountability in any country usually leads to the death of democracy in such country, adding that "we want democracy to be alive and well in this country."

The SDMP has forwarded its application for registration to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC)

Reacting to insinuations that the mega party platform might be a pedestal for the former military leader, General Ibrahim Babangida in his presidential bid next year, Falae said the Minna-based aspirant could only be supported by the SDMP if he becomes the unanimous candidate of the party.

According to Falae: "You know he (Babangida) is not in this party, he is not in the DPP (Democratic Peoples Party) and I am not in the PDP. So, if he is contesting, I am a loyal person, I will have to vote for the presidential candidate of the Social Democratic Mega Party.

"And if he is not the candidate of the SDMP, then I will be unable to vote for him. Supposing he becomes the candidate of this party, that is a hypothetical question, he has not become a member of this party, so that question does not arise."