Prominent member of Niger-Delta activist and member of the 2015 Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Presidential Campaign Organization, Comr.Prince Afoke Okporua, has urged the leadership of the party to consider the zoning of the party’s youth leadership slot to South-South this time around, saying it would amount to committing a fatal political miscalculation capable of threatening the unity of the party if anything otherwise
Comr. Okporua who spoke to reporters in Ado-Ekiti during a meeting with youth leaders in the state yesterday said, ” First, in the zoning history of PDP, a geo-political zone doesn’t hold a position twice when another zone hasn’t produced someone for that office.
In this case, Owelle Rochas Okorocha was the pioneer Youth Leader of PDP (1998/99). Why should they get the slot again when the South South hasn’t produced someone?
“I want to state categorically that I disagree with the decision of the Party in Southern Nigeria to zone the position of National Youth Leader to the South-East.
It is unacceptable, and totally not in tandem with existing national realities. Late Chief Moshood Kashimawo Olawale Abiola said ‘you can’t shave the head of a man in his absence.
“South-East can’t get the Vice Presidential ticket of our great Party and still be given two key positions in the National Working Committee (NWC), National Organising Secretary and National Youth Leader.
What criteria was used to arrive at this formula because when the VP slot was given to the South-South in 2007, the Youth Leader position wasn’t given to our region” , he said.
Okporua who has been an active and outspoken member among the PDP youth leaders, and surporting zoning the party’s national chairman to Southwest insisted that:
” it is politically suicidal to cocoon a sensitive office of National Youth Leader of the PDP to a zone when times have changed in the country.”
Arguing further, he said: ” the South-South region has kept fate more with the PDP since 1999 more than any geo-political zone.
During the last Presidential and gubernatorial elections, we produced more votes, more Governors, more Senators and more Members of the House of Reps, ahead of 2019 it is also glaring that the region will play more significant role in any ramification to return the Party back to power. ”
He likened an attempt to deny his region the youth leadership slot as denying them of their birthright : ” without looking at history and their future” and urgedleaders, elders and stakeholders from the South-South to urgently discuss among themselves, re-negotiate and: ” retrieve to the youths of the region what belongs to us.”
“The task ahead is monumental and there is need to push aside sentiment and all forms of parochialism to rescue the PDP. I call on all PDP Youths from the region to as a matter of dire urgency join in mounting pressure on our leaders so they can restore our political right.
Finally, I want to state that acts of this nature brought PDP to where it is today and denied her peace. Let’s not cause another round of crisis in the Party,” Okporua counseled.