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DUMPING ZONING WOULD BE DISASTROUS FOR PDP — CIROMA

By NBF News
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Former Finance Minister and Chairman, Northern Political Leaders Forum, (NPLF), Mallam Adamu Ciroma  has restated his warning that the removal  of  the zoning arrangement from the People Democratic Party (PDP) constitution would be disastrous for the party. The elder statesman said the decision would undermine the party's fortune during next year's general elections.

Speaking with reporters yesterday  at his residence in Abuja, Ciroma expressed consternation over the sustained double speak by chieftains of the party over the zoning arrangement  and frowned at the declaration of the party's National Executive Committee, [NEC], which declared that President Jonathan could contest the 2011presidential ticket of the party along with other willing aspirants.

While he was not categorical on what would be the next line of action to be taken by the North, if President Jonathan picks the party presidential ticket, the Chairman of the NPLF however  gave indication that the North could dump PDP.

''If they pretend that there is no zoning then they may pay a price of pretending. The cost of setting aside zoning will be shown by the results of the election.

Well  it would shake the foundation of the PDP that is based on agreement. If I reach an agreement with you and you depart from it unilaterally, how can I trust you again? So, the issue of basing a political party between individuals on the assumption that we agreed to do something, that assumption will not be there.  So there will be no party.

When the PDP calls its party primaries, it will show whether the majority in the party respects fairness and justice or it can turn around anybody and just to do what it pleases. If the majority cannot respect the truth, fairness and justice, then many people will decide whether it is worth their while to continue in that party. But this decision will not be taken until we reach the bridge. The former Governor of Central Bank of Nigeria also carpeted President Jonathan over his statement that the party only zones party  offices, not political offices, as according to President Jonathan, the party has no say on the latter.

''I am not saying that he lied. I am saying that I know more about PDP than him. I was there when PDP was formed.  And I have been  in this PDP all this time. And I have not been an insignificant member of the PDP and I can never deny what I know to be the truth.  And the truth is that there was zoning even before Obasanjo was elected and there was zoning reconfirmed when Obasanjo  was president. This is the

truth.''
Ciroma equally told journalists that there was no crack within the Committee set up to pick a consensus candidate for the north and assured that the Committee would come out with its findings after intensive consultations.

''Well we are right now working on it because we just  finished going around . We came back on Sunday night. This week I want to start meeting to consider the report which we are putting together for the members of the committee. We will begin to discuss this week. We have been all round asking for views and advise of traditional rulers, political stakeholders, consulting to find out what their views are and to inform them about what we are doing because if you are going to act on behalf of people we have to inform them.''