By Franklyn Isong
It is obvious that the outcome of the ongoing People’s Democratic Party (PDP’s) Congresses in Akwa Ibom state which has commenced today, Saturday, March 7, 2020, will play a major role on the party’s fortune in the 2023 general elections.
PDP is the party in government in the state, as an apolitical citizen of the state, I can say for sure that the expectations are high, the stakes are also high! Even though, the incumbent governor, Udom Emmanuel, is constitutionally barred from seeking a third term in office.
As a pro-democracy advocate, I believe and very strongly too that there should be internal democracy within our political parties. I don’t expect any less from the PDP at the end of these exercises.
I urge all members of the party to be orderly, peaceful and exhibit responsible behaviour throughout the exercises. This is a party’s affair no doubt but, its resultant effect will most likely affect the political atmosphere of the State.
It suffices therefore to say that the people would expect a reciprocity of the good will they have given to the party since coming into existence in 1999 in the State.
It is my expectation that the process of choosing the party’s leaders at all levels will be transparent, free, fair and credible.
To that extent, one makes haste to call on all members of the Congress Coordinating Committees of the party to rise above imposition, rigging or manipulation of the processes.
Methinks, it will be better for the party’s image and for the integrity of the party’s leaders, if at the end of the exercises, the collective will of the voters/delegates to the Congresses prevail.
To the party’s members, there should be no violence as well as no highjacking of congress’ materials.
To the outgoing state party leaders, let there be a level playing field for all the aspirants.
Don’t forget! Akwa Ibom people are watching. The world is watching and I am closely monitoring the exercise.
*Franklyn Isong is a public affairs commentator and conscience of the society.