The national leadership of the Peoples Democratic Party has summoned all the chairmanship aspirants of the party to an emergency meeting.
The Chairman of the National Caretaker Committee of the party, Ahmed Makarfi, called the meeting on behalf of members of the committee.
The meeting is scheduled to hold at the party’s national secretariat in Abuja on Tuesday before the National Executive Committee meeting will hold at the same venue.
Our correspondent gathered that the meeting became necessary following intelligence reports said to have been received by the party that some aspirants were planning to take the party to court before the convention.
The national convention is scheduled to hold in Abuja on December 9, where national officers are to be elected.
Those expected at the meeting are a former Minister of Special Duties, Prof. Taoheed Adedoja; a former Minister of Education, Prof. Tunde Adeniran; a former Deputy National Chairman of the party, Chief Bode George, and a former acting National Chairman of the party, Prince Uche Secondus.
Also expected at the meeting are a former governor of Ogun State, Otunba Gbenga Daniel; a former PDP governorship candidate in Lagos State, Mr. Jimi Agbaje; and Chief Raymond Dokpesi.
It is not clear if a former governor of Oyo State, Chief Rashidi Ladoja, will be in attendance.
Ladoja, who just returned to the party after eight years, is said to be nursing the ambition of leading the party as well.
However, the constitution of the party stipulates that he will need a waiver to achieve such aim.
The leadership of the party was said to have gathered that some of the aspirants were also being sponsored by presidential aspirants from other political parties, especially the ruling All Progressives Congress.
A member of the Board of Trustees of the party, who spoke on condition of anonymity, told our correspondent that investigations showed that some of the aspirants from the APC were investing in the national chairmanship aspirants.
He said, “We know that some of the aspirants are being funded by the APC. We want to let them know that the PDP will not allow anyone to destabilise it again. We have learnt our lessons.
“We are aware that some are planning to take us to court before the convention or are even planning to hold a parallel convention like they did during the botched national convention that we had in Port Harcourt, Rivers State the other time. We don’t want that to happen this time round.”
The meeting is expected to agree on a code of conduct for the aspirants
Makarfi, in the notice sent to the aspirants, said that they were to meet with members of the National Caretaker Committee of the party.
Dokpesi, Adedoja, Secondus and Adeniran told our correspondent on Sunday evening that they had received the invitation and promised to be at the meeting.
Dokpesi said Daniel had also informed him about his desire to be present.
He however said that there was no iota of truth in the rumour making the rounds that the position had been zoned to the South-West.
Secondus also said that he would be at the meeting, but called on other aspirants to take the interest of the party as paramount in their campaign.
“At the end of the day, the PDP will remain. We need to work together and make it stronger than it was even in 2015,” he said, adding that “none of us the aspirants, is bigger than the PDP.”
Adedoja also said he would be at the meeting, but denied the insinuation that it could be used to ask some aspirants to step down.
The former provost of the College of Education, Oyo, Oyo State, said, “I will be at the meeting. I was invited. But we don’t have the agenda yet. But nobody can use the meeting to reduce the number of the aspirants. Allow us all to go to the convention ground, and allow the delegates to pick from among us. “
In his reaction, Adeniran also said the meeting would not discuss the possibility of asking aspirants to step down.
Adeniran, who spoke through his Media Aide, Mr. Taiwo Akeju, said he won’t encourage any of the aspirants to step down.