Ahead tomorrow’s national convention of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Port-Harcourt, Rivers State, an aspirant to the Office of the National Chairman, Professor Taoheed Adedoaja, has kicked against the zoning arrangement, saying the decision to zone the office of the chairman to a specific state was an indirect form of imposition on other aspirants.
ProfessorAdedoja, from Oyo State, while speaking with newsmen in Abuja, declared that the same situation had forced many people out of the party, but assured that he would still go ahead to contest at the convention despite the micro zoning that zoned it to Lagos and Ogun states, adding that he was sure of victory.
He pointed out that before coming out, he had made wide consultations with former leaders of the party to understand the reason behind the problems that had bedeviled the party.
Adedoja, who said the field should be left open for all candidates to contest to enable the people to make a popular choice to lead the party, said “if any leader in the South-West agreed to zone the chairman to Oyo, my home state or Lagos, I will kick against it.”
According to him, “the position of the national chairman is so sensitive and important for its occupant to be a product of any form of zoning, which will not afford the candidate the opportunity to actually interact with people from across the political formations of the party.
“The office should be made competitive to the extent that any aspirant to such office should go round the country and seek the support of the people and not become a product of some people’s leaders.”
Adedoja said in all his quest for political office, both at state and national levels, he had pursued the path of peace and non-violence in his campaign, even when he lost such election.
He insisted that any candidate for the office of the chairman must believe in fairness, equity and rule of law in all that he does.
He said: “Humility should define the code of conduct of any leader and to lead a party such as the PDP, you need to understand the diversity and culture of the country.”
Adedoja, who said he had the support of the PDP members from Oyo State to contest for the office of the chairman of the party, said he was eminently qualified to occupy the office, stating that he had spent 55 per cent of his life in the North.