Jonathan Was A Mistake – Raymond Dopkesi
Fielding the former President, Dr. Goodluck Jonathan, in the 2011 and 2015 presidential elections was a costly mistake by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), the Chairman of the party’s national conference organising committee, Chief Raymond Dokpesi, has said.
Dokpes, who spoke at a media briefing in Abuja, Tuesday, said the imposition of Jonathan by the PDP might have been responsible for the party’s loss of the presidency in the last general election.
He said the zoning formula put in place by the party’s founding fathers was jettisoned by its leadership at the time.
According to him, the PDP made the first mistake when it failed to retain the party’s 2011 presidential ticket in the North after the death of former President Umaru Yar ‘Adua.
The second mistake, he said, was making Jonathan the sole presidential candidate of the party in the 2015 general election, adding that the action caused disaffection among party chieftains from the North.
Dokpesi apologised to all party chieftains who felt offended by the action and extended the apology to the Nigerian voters who were denied the freedom of choice by the PDP.
He said having retained power for 16 years at a stretch, it was normal for a party to make mistakes, adding that the party was in the process of repositioning ahead of the 2019 general election.
The PDP committee chairman said Nigerians should forgive the party for the many mistakes it made while in power, assuring that the party was restructuring to enable the youths play active role in the future.
He identified lack of internal democracy in most of its nomination processes, adding “there was impunity, imposition of candidates, breach of the zoning arrangement and lack of a level playing field for members.”
“Make no mistakes, the PDP is aware that there were errors made along the way. We admit that at certain times in our past, mistakes have been made.
“We did not meet the expectations of Nigerians. We tender our apology. But the past is exactly what it is. We call on all party faithful, supporters and sympathisers to partner with us going forward.”