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Consensus PDP presidential candidate likely in 2023, says Ayu



The National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Dr. Iyorchia Ayu, has hinted of the likelihood of the party choosing its 2023 presidential candidate by consensus.

Ayu spoke against the backdrop of his election as the party’s consensus candidate in the October 31 national convention.

Most members of his newly inaugurated executive committee were also chosen through consensus.

“If the PDP could come together to agree on a particular individual for chairman, it means it was capable too of coming together to produce one single candidate to challenge the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the presidential election,” he said.

The party chairman spoke on Sunday during an interdenominational thanksgiving service organised in his honour by the Benue State chapter of the PDP.

But in a statement yesterday, he noted that should the party fail in adopting the consensus option for its presidential candidate, all aspirants for the PDP ticket would be treated fairly.

“Every aspirant that will come forward for the presidential election will be treated fairly, with equity and with fairness. There will be a level-playing field for everybody,” Ayu said.

The party chairman restated his earlier declaration that the PDP would make a clean sweep of the Presidency, the two chambers of the National Assembly as well as a minimum of 25 governorship seats.

He urged Nigerians not to lose hope in the country, saying though the ruling party’s leadership has failed, the PDP was coming on a rescue mission.

Ayu dismissed fears that Nigeria was headed for a collapse, assuring Nigerians and the international community that a PDP administration post-2023 would pull the country from the brink.

He said: “We want Nigerians to take note that we started this battle with 21 state governors. And we built it to 28 state governors. Those mistakes that were made, that made us to lose elections in 2015, will be corrected.

“Do not lose hope because of a small collection of people who have come to divide Nigeria and to destroy our country.

“Keep hope alive. PDP is back. And PDP will be back with good governance and good policies. The economy will expand. Nigerians will come back to work. Nigerians will produce and export. Nigeria will be a great country once more.

“I want to assure you, all of you who are non-Nigerians, that we are determined as a political party to do the needful, that is unite ourselves, work hard, mobilise fellow Nigerians, take over power, rebuild our country, and then shame those foreign detractors who are prophesying doom, that Nigeria is going to break up.

“Nigeria is not going to break up. Nigeria will remain united, productive, respected and be in the forefront of world affairs. Very soon, you will see what I am telling you. We have done it before and we will do it again.”

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Wike meets PDP senators, Orubebe



The Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike on Thursday received the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) leadership in the Senate in Rumuepirikom, his country home in Obio/Akpor Local Government Area of the state.

The PDP delegation was led by the Senate Minority Leader, Philip Aduda.

Also a former Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Godsday Orubebe met with Wike

Orubebe recently resigned from the Peoples Democratic Party.

In attendance at the meeting were the Senate Minority Whip, Chukwuka Utazi; Shuaibu Lau, Danjuma La’ah and Barry Mpigi.

A Government House source said the senators arrived at the governor’s residence some minutes past 3pm and immediately went into a closed door with their host.

The outcomes of the separate meetings were not made public.

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ADC presidential candidate denies tax fraud allegations in US



Dumebi Kachikwu

The presidential candidate of the African Democratic Congress (ADC), Dumebi Kachikwu, has denied allegations of tax fraud in the United States.

Kachikwu said this in a statement on Wednesday titled, ‘Allegations of tax evasion, fraud against me untrue, politically motivated’.

The presidential candidate said the allegations were propagated by his political opponents who were unhappy with his victory at the ADC Presidential primary.

The Roots TV boss, therefore, asked supporters to ignore online reports that the US government had indicted him for tax evasion running into millions of dollars.

The statement read in part, “A few days ago, my campaign team received information that one of the aspirants who lost out in the just concluded ADC presidential primaries was planning a series of smear campaigns against me.

“I was therefore not surprised when I saw this story. Contrary to the information being peddled, I was assessed an additional $9m several years ago by the US Inland Revenue Service.

“This amount was reduced to $2m and when the IRS sued to collect the amount, my lawyers didn’t contest it and instead waited for a default judgement in order to go to the next stage which is making an offer in compromise to reduce the amount to be paid. This is a standard legal practice in tax matters.”

Kachikwu also denied allegations that he delivered a bribe to convicted US Congressman, William Jefferson.

The ADC candidate said rather, he was the one who reported the former Congressman to the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission.

The statement further read, “(The report) claimed I had delivered a $100,000 cash bribe to curry the favour of the former US Congressman.  This is another lie as multiple evidence abounds online clearly showing I was the victim who reported the US congressman to the EFCC and the FBI for defrauding my company.

“I have now instructed my lawyers to sue all digital media organisations who participated in the dissemination of this falsehood.”

The Roots TV boss said he was sure of victory in next year’s Presidential election.

Kachikwu, who is a younger brother to a former Minister of State for Petroleum, Ibe Kachikwu, surprisingly defeated a former Deputy Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Prof. Kingsley Moghalu, to win the ADC’s Presidential ticket.

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Kwankwaso’s party gains one, Labour Party another as senators defect from APC, PDP



Two Senators on Wednesday announced their defection from their former political parties to another party ahead of the 2023 general election.

The Senators are: Francis Ezenwa Onyewusi representing Imo East Senatorial district and Haliru Dauda Jika representing Bauchi Central Senatorial district.

Their defection was made known by the Senate President, Dr. Ahmad Ibrahim Lawan during a plenary on Wednesday.

While Senator Francis Onyewusi who is a first-timer to the Senate was a member of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and defected to Labour Party (LP), his counterpart in Bauchi was a member of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) before he defected to the New Nigeria Peoples Party (NNPP).

The defected Senators cited injustice and inequity in their former political parties that made them fail the primary elections.

On Tuesday, three All Progressives Congress (APC) senators defected to other political parties.

Ahmad Babba Kaita, senator representing Katsina north; Lawal Yahaya Gumau, senator representing Bauchi north, and Francis Alimikhena, senator representing Edo north, all defected to other parties.

Kaita, who represents President Muhammadu Buhari’s senatorial district, defected to the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) alongside Alimikhena.Advertisement

Gumau defected to the New Nigeria Peoples Party (NNPP), a party led by Rabiu Kwankwaso, former governor of Kano state.

The defectors have cited “marginalisation” and unfair treatment by their former parties as the reason for joining new parties.

Most of them were seeking reelection, but lost their tickets in their former parties.

The number of APC senators now stands at 66.

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