Delta Central PDP Stakeholders Endorse Jonathan, Okowa

BY SAM DUVWODE
The Delta Central People’s Democratic Party ( PDP ), stakeholders have unanimously endorsed President Goodluck Jonathan and Senator Ifeanyi Okowa as their choice candidates for the forthcoming Presidential and Governorship election respectively.
The endorsement which was led by the Delta State Deputy Governor, Prof. Amos Utuama, Chairman, PDP Delta Central, Sir Tom Amioku, Senator Emmanuel Aguariavwodo, amongst others during a PDP Delta Central meeting at PTI Effurun, also witnesses the presentation of PDP candidates that will represent Delta Central for the various positions which includes, The House of Senate, House of Representatives, and the Delta State House of Assembly.
Prof. Amos Utuama, while addressing the stakeholders and Delta central party faithfuls noted that PDP is a party of peace, unity and oneness where you see others ready to step down or leave their position for fellow party members to takeover.
According to him, PDP Delta Central has continued to show love and understanding amongs its members which is an indication of the peace and progress the party has been experiencing. He urged all to work tirelessly ensuring that all candidates of the party vying for the various positions becomes victorious in the election.
The state deputy governor who congratulated the various candidates for securing the party’s mandate, assured that PDP Delta Central is one united family and all votes must be targeted at ensuring that the party becomes victorious at the Presidential, Governorship, Senate, House of Representatives as well as the State House of Assembly elections.
He noted that the party has made its choice in the person of President Jonathan, and Dr. Ifeanyi Okowa at the national and state level respectively and urged the good people of Delta Central to shun all form of bitterness and ethnicity and support the Peoples Democratic Party ( PDP ) in this election.
Earlier, Chairman PDP Delta Central, Sir Tom Amioku, in his remark, noted that with the on going PDP campaign, there is need for PDP Delta Central to come together and brainstorm on the way forward in order to achieve victory at the elections.
He noted that since INEC has officially released the names of the candidates for the election, it is important that all members come together and work in unity in ensuring that there is peace and harmony amongst party members.
Sir Amioku, noted that various campaign committee will be set up in ensuring that party members are involved in one committee or the order, saying that all members will be carried along as no one will be left out, adding that this is a great task that involves the needed support of every PDP member in the state.
Highpoint of the meeting was the presentation of PDP Delta Central flag bearers for the House of Senate, House of Representatives, and Delta State House of Assembly in 8 local government in Delta Central, which was followed by vote of confidence passed on President Goodluck Jonathan, Dr. Ifeanyi Okowa, all Delta Central PDP Candidates as well as the PDP Delta Central led Exco.
Jonathan says post-election violence can be avoided
President Goodluck Jonathan on Wednesday in Abuja said that post-election violence could be avoided if politicians and their supporters were patriotic enough to do the right things.

He said this at the 2015 Elections Sensitisation Workshop, organised for all political parties.
The workshop was organised by the Office of the National Security Adviser to the President, in collaboration with the Office of the Special Adviser to the President on Inter-Party Affairs.
“At the end of elections, we do not need to kill people. We do not need to get our houses or industries burnt.
“I believe we will get there, if we are sincere to do what is right in this country.
“The emphasis here is electoral violence not electoral malpractices. With electoral malpractices, the courts can help to some extent, but there is nothing the courts can do about electoral violence.
“If a property is burnt, it is burnt. If you identify the person, he can go in for arson charges. It is often difficult convicting people,’’ the President said.
He traced the history of electoral violence in the country to the first republic in the South West, which saw to its collapse.
He added that the second republic also did not last because of rancour among political gladiators.
“Once politicians start abusing themselves; insulting every institution, it is just like what late Tai Solarin referred to as the beginning of the end,” the president said.
He added that the 2011 general elections, attested by both foreign and local election observers as credible, free and fair, also had its share of violence in parts of the country, especially the North.
President Jonathan, however, said that electoral violence was not necessarily caused by election malpractice, adding that some other factors fueled it.
“In Kano and Bauchi, properties and houses were burnt down and in Bauchi, 10 young innocent youth corps members were slaughtered.
“The only thing one can deduce, because we cannot say there were malpractices to favour the candidate that won, because in Kano, I only got 16 per cent and in Bauchi, 15 per cent of the total votes cast.
“Even in states where we got more than 50 per cent, there were no violence. So, violence were not necessarily caused by electoral malpractices,’’ he said.
According to him, factors which cause electoral violence include provocative statements of politicians and the factors of religious leaders.
He said that some religious leaders preached hatred and instigate their followers to be confrontational and sometimes label some people or candidates as enemies of their faith.
“We always tend to follow what they say, so their enemies must be fought,’’ he stressed.
The president said another factor was the pronouncement of ethnic or tribal leaders, some of which were quite provocative and very inflammatory.
He, therefore, said that there was need for all political stakeholders to put hands on deck to address the situation and ensure that electoral violence if not stopped, was basically reduced in the country.
President Jonathan added that politicians must accept that the struggle to rule was not struggle to conquer.
“Whenever you win election, you will rule the whole country and not only your political party members. At the end of elections, everybody must be your friend and followers,’’ he said.
He further said that there was need to rejig the country`s law with regards to the presidential system, to ensure that it did not encourage electoral violence.
He added that there was also a need for the executive to come up with a system that would ensure an all-inclusive government after every election.
This, he said, should ensure that parties that did well, also by right and not by privilege or discretion of the governor or president, share government appointments.
The president also said that there was need to evolve a policy where persons considered as political nuisance with criminal records were not allowed to contest elective offices.
“We must find a way of filtering those people out,’’ President Jonathan said.
He re-empahsised that the Federal Government would do everything possible to ensure that the forthcoming general elections was credible, free and fair and seen to be so.
“It is good for all of us who are contesting to see that the elections are free and fair if we are to be comfortable in office,’’ he said.
He, however, said that some of INEC`s guidelines gave room for confusion.
“In the Ekiti election, the electoral law provides for red ink to tick on the paper. On the day of the election probably the ink was not provided, so that substantially affected the result of the election.
2015: U.S. ambassador commends media, others, for promoting non-violence
The U.S. Ambassador to Nigeria, Mr James Entwistle, has commended the Nigerian media, civil society groups and artistes for promoting non-violence as well as free and fair elections in February.
Entwistle gave the commendation yesterday at the launch of “The Eisenhower Leadership Series” in honour of the late Martin Luther King Jnr.
The ceremony, which was simultaneously held in Lagos and Abuja, was organised by the Nigerian Alumni of the Eisenhower Fellowship and the U.S. Mission in Nigeria.
“Whenever I meet with a politician or a candidate here, I ask him or her to publicly take the non-violence pledge.
“That is, to state clearly in front of their fellow Nigerians that they will not condone, forment or endorse violence before, during or after the elections.
“I have no doubt that the elections will be boisterous, loud and hotly-contested and that is all good.
“But all of us must do everything we can, in the spirit of Dr Martin Luther King Jnr., to ensure that exuberance does not descend in violence,’’ he said.
He, however, urged eligible Nigerian voters to come out en-masse and exercise their franchise to vote for candidates of their choices.
“All over the world, including my country, people have struggled and in some cases died to obtain the right to vote.
“When we have the right to vote but do not use it, we disrespect our memory. So, I urge all Nigerians who are eligible to vote to do so.
“Vote is one of the most powerful weapons that we in large boisterous democracies like Nigeria and the United States have,’’ he said.
The envoy also enjoined Nigerians to embrace the ideals of non-violence as espoused by Luther King Jnr. in the conduct of next month’s elections.
A former governor of Ekiti, Dr Kayode Fayemi, also urged Nigerians to ensure that they get their Permanent Voters Cards so as to be able to participate in the elections.
Fayemi said participation in the elections would help Nigerians choose credible leaders as well as rebuild the nation.