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PDP National chairmanship: What’s Damagum up to?

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Alhaji Umar Damagum

Analysis by Anthony Maliki, Abuja

A credible opposition in any democracy is germane to good governance and it is no different in Nigeria. However, since the return to civil rule in 1999, opposite has not been as poor and weak like in the present dispensation.

Ever since the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) lost the Presidential election in 2015 and became the major opposition party, holding government accountable has gone underground. This seems to be deliberate as the party has continually been plagued with one crisis to another.

Now that the party is poised to put its house in order, strategically plan to wrestle back power, some of its leaders are trying to return the party to the trenches.

A very simple process in doing the right thing is becoming a hard nut to crack. It is perpetrated by the Deputy National Chairman (North) and acting National Chairman, Alhaji Umar Damagum. He is trying to illegally extend his stay as acting National Chairman beyond August 15, 2024 by obtaining a kangaroo court injunction.

The position needed to be filled by a substantive candidate from the North-Central geo-political zone not only as constitutionally stated by the party but morally rightly to so as to complete the tenure of former National Chairman, Dr. Iyorchia Ayu which ought to be up to December 2025.

But what is Damagum really up to? Many political watchers think he is playing a script designed from the outside the fold to weaken the PDP. However, some sectors are putting on check and asking him to do the needful or booted out.

The North Central Rights Advocates warned that it would amount to robbery of the constitutional rights of the people of North Central geo- political zone if Damagum stays beyond August 15.

The body rose from an emergency meeting in Abuja stating that Damagum is trying to use the law courts to continually and irresponsibly “rob” the people of North Central Zone of their constitutional right to the national Chairmanship seat of the PDP.

Besides, it called on all the Critical Stakeholders of the PDP from the North-East geo-political where Damagum comes from to immediately call him to order before things fall apart to the detriment of every key stakeholder of the North-Eastern extraction.

According to body, “Damagum has gone too far in his misadventure and will be vehemently and ruthlessly resisted for the common sense to prevail…For avoidance of doubt, the North Central Geo-Political Zone is not begging Damagum to leave the office of the National Chairman of PDP after 15th August 2024 but a command to him to do so…”

The PDP is huge that an individual cannot hold it to ransom for personal and selfish gains. Critical Stakeholders in the North-Central must wise-up and rise up the defend their rights else they would be helpless in selecting a substantive National Chairman of their choice.

Indeed, all other positions into the National Executive Council (NEC) within the party are not eliciting such controversy except that of the National Chairman. Why? Does it is mean nobody in the North-Central is qualified to lead the party? Perhaps that’s what Damagum wrongly thinks. He must allow Critical Stakeholders in the North-Central Zone to make their choice and pull the party from its predicament.

Rather than tolerate Damagum to mess up the PDP and not allow it to be a formidable opposition and plan to reclaim the Presidency in 2027, he should be shown the door.

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