2023: Udom demands PDP presidential ticket as reward for loyalty
Governor Emmanuel Udom of Akwa Ibom State Wednesday in Abuja said he had done so much for the Peoples Democratic Party and, therefore, it was only fitting that the party supports him to emerge its flagbearer and eventually, become Nigeria’s president, in 2023.
Udom also argued that he understands Nigeria’s economic issues and has been tested and trusted to bring lasting results to the country’s decades-long woes.
The governor said this in a meeting with the National Working Committee of the Party at its Wadata Plaza national secretariat in Abuja.
Udom whose second tenure ends in 2023 is one of 17 aspirants who have so far purchased the party’s presidential nomination and expression of interest forms.
A day earlier, another aspirant, Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers state, had voiced a similar appeal, saying it was high time the party repay him for his selfless service.
Speaking on Wednesday, Udom said “If I want to go to the background of why I need the PDP to support me. I used to say it before, membership is not ownership. So sustainability is the real ownership. If you check, very few of us have been with the party through those trying times or periods. We stood by this party.
“We did our very best to make sure this party did not extinguish and today I thank God this party has come back to its formidable stage. We did everything possible, only very few of us, we did everything possible.
“So Paul the Apostle said, ‘If I bless you so much spiritually, is it too much for you to bless me materially?’ If I’ve done so much for the party, it is not too much for the party to stand by me to rescue Nigeria.”
Further selling his candidacy to the NWC, Udom asserted that “I understand clearly the economic and security issues of Nigeria today. And that I have an all-in-one solution to the infrastructure renaissance of Nigeria today. I have the solution for human capacity development that this country needs.
“Why? Because I’m one of those front-liners that believe the problem with Nigeria is not unemployment, but capacity development. I am one of those who do not stand by and tell people what to do and never tell them how to do it.
“Why am I saying this? I’ve been tested, I’ve been tried and I think I’ve been refined.”
In his remarks, the PDP Chairman, Dr Iyorchia Ayu, told those present at the meeting that the NWC will create a level-playing field for all 17 presidential aspirants.
Ayu said, “Yesterday, I told you we have the best. We don’t want aspirants who run around the stadium but cannot run a railway station. Our aspirants are people who can perform. Your Excellency, if it were in my powers, secretary and deputies can carry the presidency and give you to repair our economy and to sort out our security.
“What is very impressive about this presentation, is that you spoke only on issues, things that are bothering Nigerians, and what you can do the solve the problems of Nigeria. That is what the PDP stands for. Repeatedly I made it very clear to all aspirants of the Peoples Democratic Party, to stay on your message. Don’t attack your fellow aspirants. And I’m happy that message is sinking.
“Many of us have watched Governor Emmanuel Udom for a long time, many of you who travelled here today, it’s true as he has said, you fly Ibom Air. It is the only airline that leaves on time. So, if the delegates of the PDP offer the ticket to this aspirant we have here, I’m sure Nigerians will leave on time. But that is left to the delegates.
“Our job as National Working Committee is to prepare a level playing field for you to come and play your game. I want to assure you that we are committed to the most transparent and fair primaries in the history of the Peoples Democratic Party.”