How Shekarau may still be Senatorial candidate in PDP
Former Kano State governor and current Senator representing Kano Central, Mallam Ibrahim Shekarau, will not be contesting to return to the Senate.
Shekarau on Monday announced that he has left the New Nigerian Peoples Party (NNPP) which he joined about three months ago, and under which he was to recontest for the Senatorial seat he is occupying. He also announced that he has joined the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
He told the crowd in Kano on Monday that he has written to INEC chairman and to the Kano State Resident Electoral Commissioner of INEC that he was no longer contesting the senatorial position on the platform of the NNPP.
But Shekarau may not be able to contest the senatorial position even under the PDP.
An expert in electoral matters in Nigeria told Nigerian Sketch that “Since the time had lapsed for parties to submit their candidates, then Shekarau can not contest. But if there is still time, PDP may decide to submit his name, depending on their internal arrangements.”
A Kano-based private legal practitioner, Usman Umar Fari, however said there is room for Shekarau to still be a candidate.
“Remember that Mallam Shekarau said he wrote INEC and NNPP to intimate them of his withdrawal. That tells you that a contestant whose name was submitted to INEC can withdraw. And if he withdraws, the law is that the party will carry out a new primary within a stipulated timeframe and submit a new candidate.
“The same thing may happen in PDP. If the party wants to float Shekarau, then the present senatorial candidate must write to INEC withdrawing his candidacy. Then, the party will hold another primary where Shekarau may emerge and his name will now be submitted to INEC as substitute”, Fari explained.
Shekarau on Monday urged his supporters to work for the PDPs victory in the 2023 general elections.
He made the call shortly after PDP’s presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar and the party’s national chairman, Iyorchia Ayu, welcomed Shekarau back to the party in Kano.
Shekarau said, “I welcome our dignitaries to this memorable occasion, particularly the PDP presidential candidate, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar; former Vice-President Namadi Sambo; the PDP National Chairman, PDP governors and other guests.
“I, Ibrahim Shekarau, inform you that from Monday, August 29, 2022, my supporters and I have dumped the NNPP and joined the PDP.
“I have written to the NNPP National Chairman, chairmen at the state, local governments, and ward levels of the party that I have dumped the NNPP.
“I have equally written to INEC Chairman and to the Kano State Resident Electoral Commissioner of INEC that I am no longer contesting the senatorial position on the platform of the NNPP.”
Atiku, who was accompanied by his running mate and the Delta State Governor, Ifeanyi Okowa, expressed confidence that Shekarau’s defection to the PDP would result in the party’s victory in the state.
In his remarks, Ayu said Kano was important and strategic to the party, and that having people like Shekarau will help the party achieve its goal.
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