One of the aspirants for the office of the National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Raymond Dokpesi, on Thursday said the party will break up if its governors impose a new leader on the party.
He also said the party is in crisis because its leaders started moving away from the ideals of its founding fathers.
Dokpesi, who made the submissions at a briefing in Abuja, asked PDP governors to break away from past culture of impunity.
He said: “I want us to just hope and pray that the governors who spoke out very clearly said after the Ali Modu -Sheriff episode, they had learnt their lessons and they will allow the party to take or make its own decision.
“And I verily believe them even when I have seen some departure from that. I have seen some departure from that and I am not naive to believe that I should take their words hook line and sinker as it will appear but I want to hope that Nigerians are watching.
“There is nobody that owns PDP, it belongs to everybody. The consequence of not allowing internal democracy to prevail in the PDP is the fact that the party will break, the party will disappear into oblivion.
“So, if the PDP does not reform now, it will not survive the current crisis and that aside, let me state very clearly that I do not belong to any faction.
“I am not even aware of any faction of the PDP. I know that there is a central PDP, I know that there were disagreements over the processes of selecting an acting chairman of the party and I am aware of the fact that prior to the main convention, a good majority of the party members believed that once the NEC had approved that the presidency should go to the north, a memorandum will be presented to the convention that the presidency should go to the north and that by PDP tradition, the chairmanship should go to the south and you cannot change this.
“It is part of impunity that a group of persons get up and say we want to change because I believe it is not their personal property. If you are able to market it across and members of the party agree and say yes, that is fine. This issue is about communicating with every member of the party and respecting their views not a group of persons coming together and thinking that once they have decided, that should be final.
Dokpesi traced the crisis in PDP to when it started disconnecting from the electorate.
He added: “They started disconnecting from the electorate. They started moving away from the ideals that brought about the formation of the party. Impunity had set in, there were impositions of candidates, and internal democracy was not available.
“It became very glaring that simple zoning principles within the party were abandoned and quite a lot of the manifestoes of the party and set objectives, service to humanity and improvement among others were in the process of jeopardy.
“So they started offending each other in the party. We started stepping on each other’s toes. Those that were not happy decided to move out of the party, those that were able to manage, managed under a lot of pains, and so on.”