Ekiti State Governor, Ayo Fayose, says members of the PDP are tired of old men running the party as they are responsible for its fall from power in 2015.
Speaking on Sunday Politics, Fayose said that the controversies surrounding the party’s zoning arrangement is not an indication that they were in crisis but that the party is in a period when critical decisions are being made and interests must be protected.
According to him, the most important thing is for the party to get things right and this they are already doing.
A member of the PDP Board of Trustees, Chief Bode George, had in an earlier interview described the PDP zoning as one capable of doing more harm than good and which would be resisted.
He was of the opinion that if the party zones its presidential candidacy in 2019 to the north, it is the right of the southwest region to have the party’s national chairmanship position.
The decision of the zoning committee to zone the the party’s national chairmanship position to the northeast did not go down well with him.
Chief George warned that the PDP lost in 2015 because of its disregard for the opinions of some elders of the party who are custodians of the culture of the party and its logic in making major decisions.
Reacting to this, Fayose said, “I have a lot of respected for Chief Bode George, he is our leader, we will continue to respect him but when it comes to the nitty gritty, where is the interest? You must find out the underlining factors.
“Chief Bode George told me personally that he wants to be national chairman of the party, I told him no I won’t support him.
“With all due respect to the elderly people in this party, they must take the backstage. People are tired of seeing the same old faces again.
“I have been hearing Ahmadu Alli since 1976 when we sang ‘Alli must go’ in secondary school. Chief Bode George has been governor of Ondo State almost 40 years ago. They are our leaders and we love them but they should take the backstage.
Fayose also disagreed with the notion that the southwest had been divided over the zoning, dismissing the meeting reportedly held to discuss the zone’s seeming disapproval. He argued that the absence of PDP’s southwest governors at the meeting showed that it did not represent the opinion of the southwest.
“Chief Bode George was the convener of that meeting. Most people that came to that meeting did not know what they were coming for. We are in very peculiar times when we need to address issues differently,” he warned.
He blamed the PDP founding fathers for the party’s loss in 2015. “The grandfathers of PDP lost it in 2015, it’s (now) a new beginning, and they should pocket those stories.”
The Governor insisted that the old members do not have the capacity to rebuild the party. He mentioned Dr. Doyin Okupe as one of those who have approached him on the position and whom he would not support.
Fayose threw his weight behind the PDP zoning arrangement and the possible emergence of incumbent National Chairman Alli-Modu Sheriff as the party’s chairman at the national convention.
He revealed that every member of the party’s zoning committee voted for the northeast to retain the position of national chairman.
On allegations that he betrayed the southwest region where he belongs, Fayose said, “I was the very first person to look out for Senator Bode Olajumoke (as national chairman) mentioning that it must come to the southwest.
“But how many of them came or publicly said ‘I want to contest’? You don’t give positions to unwilling horses.
He went head to declare his support for Alli-Modu Sheriff, “He is the incumbent and he is still going to win this election.”