Bayelsa State Governor, Seriake Dickson, has urged leaders of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) not allow the party’s national convention, scheduled for December 9, 2017, distract them from the 2019 general elections.
Dickson said the priority of the party is to pay more attention on how to re-capture power from the All Progressives Congress (APC) in 2019.
His Special Adviser on Media Relations, Fidelis Soriwei, in a statement, yesterday, said Dickson threw the challenge during a courtesy call on him by a national chairman aspirant and DAAR Communications Chairman Emeritus, High Chief Raymond Dokpesi, who was in Yenagoa, to solicit support from Bayelsa delegates.
He said the leadership has a responsibility to come up with a candidate from the northern part of the country, to actualise the project to recapture power from the APC.
Dickson expressed concern that some party members are still stuck in the old way of doing things in the PDP and insisted that the forthcoming convention must be credible, transparent and devoid of manipulation.
“Let me seize this opportunity to caution our party leaders across this country.
“ I hope we are not focusing too much on this convention instead of focusing on winning federal power.
“I think we should be strategic and focus and think of how to get an acceptable candidate through a fair process too, for all the zones; in a process that is open to all the three zones of the North so that we can get somebody who would have the support to win the presidency for us. That is the key thing.
“So, I advise that people should not see the forthcoming national convention as an end in itself. People should see it rather as a means to an end. Nevertheless, the convention is important because we need to get it right; the process itself must be right and the outcome should also be acceptable so that we can now move to the next stage.”
Earlier, Dokpesi told his host that he was in Bayelsa to solicit the governor’s support for his quest to become the next chairman of the PDP.
Dokpesi also said the South South, as the most vulnerable region, is open to attack by the APC, deserves committed representation, a personality of courage and vision like Dickson who stood his ground to defeat the APC in the last governorship election in Bayelsa.