Elumelu urges PDP presidential aspirants not to relent on consensus drive

Tunde Joshua, Abuja

Minority Leader of the House of Representatives, Hon. Ndudi Elumelu has urged presidential aspirants of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) not to abandon exploring the consensus option in finding a presentable candidate for the party.

Consensus arrangement, according to him is a viable option which the PDP can explore because it will reduce contention and make the presidential primary election less acrimonious.

Elumelu gave this advice when one of the party’s presidential aspirants, Dr Mohammed Hayatu-Deen met with the PDP House of Representatives caucus to seek their support for his ambition.

Recall that Hayatu-Deen and three others; Bukola Saraki, Bala Mohammed and Aminu Tambuwal went into a consensus arrangement which later broke down after the selection of Saraki and Bala by the Prof. Ango Abdullahi- led selection committee.

Both Hayatu-Deen and Tambuwal faulted the process which led to the selection of both Saraki and Bala as PDP Northern Consensus candidates.

However, Elumelu believed if carefully handled, the process of consensus can bring peaceful resolution of an acceptable recruitment process.

Elumelu said “that brings me to the issue you were championing, which is consensus. That brings me to the issue of the unity that all of you went around, crisscrossing this nation, seeking understanding amongst yourself, that are aspiring to lead this nation.

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“I want to plead that you will continue in that strive. Nigerians are waiting for us; they’re calling on us to rescue and rebuild Nigeria.

“Well, we can only do that If we also put ourselves in a position that Nigerians hope to see us, to rescue them and bring them back to where our founding fathers had wished that we should be.”

The minority leader lamented the near total collapse of the socio-economic, political, security and infrastructural sectors of the country under the APC government of President Muhammadu Buhari.

He said “when APC was coming, they promised Nigerians that we’ll be able to sleep in our various homes, with our properties and lives secured but today it is a mirage. Our brothers and sisters that were kidnapped between Kaduna to Abuja bound train are yet to be rescued. One of our sisters had given birth where they are being held captive. That is the height of it.

“It is in this country only that a train will be leaving from Lagos to Ibadan and in the middle of the way, they will tell us the fuel has finished. It has never happened in other country or history of the world,” he said

On behalf of the lawmaker, he expressed confidence in the ability of the aspirant, Hayatu-Deen to govern Nigeria and return the country to path of prosperity.

Earlier, Dr Hayatu-Deen while seeking the support of the legislators said he is a detribalized Nigeria who will strive to unite the country.

He said “even though I was born in Maiduguri, I’d hardly ever lived there for more than eight weeks at a time. So I’ve been in Nigeria the institution where I went to school where I lived and commingled with Nigerians from all walks of life, regardless of background, regardless of geography, regardless of tribe or religion. So I have no blood flowing through my veins. It is too late at this time for me to be anything else, but a quintessential Nigeria.”

He promised to fix the nation’s economy because he is a shrewd economist that had served three Nigerian Presidents as Economic Adviser and a founding member of the Nigerian Economic Summit Group (NESG).

“I have been an adviser to three presidents on three presidential advisory councils. So don’t blame me for the next thing that I’m going to say. I’m proud of what I did with every government. President-Elect Buhari had called me to join other Nigerians to put together a blueprint for his transition program. I was chairman of the committee on the economy and finance. I led the economic team. I want to let you know that we produced an outstanding document that can withstand the test of time, anytime, any day,” he said.

As someone with a proven track record of transformation, he promised to unlock the switch of the Nigerian economy and bring out the entrepreneurial energy that flows through the veins of Nigerians.

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