Yenagoa – The People’s Democratic Party (PDP) in Bayelsa State may adopt a harmonisation process to select its candidates for the local government election scheduled for July 27, 2019, by the State Independent Electoral Commission (BYSIEC).
Mr Moses Cleopas, the State PDP Chairman, gave this indication while briefing reporters after a stakeholders meeting of the party in Yenagoa on Tuesday.
According to him, the decision became imperative in order to avoid “rancorous primary election” for the party to produce chairmanship and councillorship candidates for the council polls.
He explained that the party was constrained by the factors of time and the November 2 state governorship election to be conducted by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).
Cleopas, who was flanked by Keku Godspower, state PDP secretary; Kombowei Benson, speaker of the state House of Assembly; Fyneman Wilson, Political Adviser to Governor Seriake Dickson and Daniel Iworiso-Markson, Commissioner for Information and Orientation, among others, said that the harmonisation of aspirants would be done through consensus building.
The PDP chairman stated that every member of the party with legitimate ambition was free to exercise his right to contest for the local government polls.
Cleopas urged such party members to “consult wide” and seek the support and approval of stakeholders of the party in their wards and local governments areas.
He said, “Because of the time factor, and because of the governorship election that shall follow almost immediately thereafter, it is in the thinking of the party that we shall not have a very rancorous primary election.
“That is not to mean that the doors shall be shut against prospective aspirants. But a situation where we will be fighting ourselves for councilorship and chairmanship election, shall not be encouraged. How do we intend to achieve that so that we don’t disenfranchise people?
“The party, at the hour, believes that proper consultation across every ward and local government in the state shall be redoubled by stakeholders and consensus shall be encouraged.”
Cleopas, who boasted that the PDP in Bayelsa had the capacity to win an election in the state, said the party would mobilise the grassroots for the local government and governorship polls.
He stated that the PDP had put together a tentative calendar of activities for the council election beginning with the sale of nomination form on May 10 in line with the guidelines of the state electoral umpire, which would be ratified by the national secretariat of the PDP.
He also said that the party remained an indivisible party in the state, and called on party supporters and members to maintain “the unity, love, oneness and understanding with which we always go into elections.”