A former Minister of Aviation, Chief Femi Fani-Kayode, will be contesting the position of the national chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party, should the position be zoned to the South-West, The PUNCH has learnt.
Fani-Kayode, who was the Director of Publicity for the Goodluck Jonathan Campaign Organisation, will be competing with a former Deputy National Chairman of the PDP, Chief Bode George; the governorship candidate of the party in Lagos in 2015, Mr. Jimi Agbaje; and a former Minister of Education, Prof. Tunde Adeniran.
Fani-Kayode’s Media Adviser, Mr. Jude Ndukwe, told our correspondent that consultations were still ongoing but did not rule out the possibility of the former minister contesting.
He, however, said Fani-Kayode was under pressure to run for the position.
Ndukwe said the former minister had been on ground since the PDP crisis started and his loyalty had never wavered.
He said, “It is far too early to make this decision but I can tell you that there is a lot of pressure on him from various quarters to run for a key position on the National Working Committee of the party.
“We are still waiting for the zoning formula and the date of the convention. It is after all that has been agreed on that we will decide whether he will run for the national chairmanship or anything else or not.
“One thing is clear though and that is that our party needs strong leadership to take on the APC Federal Government. He has that strength and passion and he has worked very hard for the party. He has also been defending democratic values for the last two years. Meetings and consultations are still going on so let us wait and see how it all goes.”
There were also reports that the immediate past governor of Ondo State, Dr. Olusegun Mimiko, may contest but sources close to the governor could not give a definitive answer when contacted on Monday.
Mimiko could also not be reached for comment as he was said to be out of the country.
Sources within the PDP told our correspondent that the South-South caucus of the party was also gunning for the chairmanship position.
However, some senior members of the party said the South-West would not accept anything less than the chairmanship position.
It was, however, learnt that there was a general consensus within the party that the Vice-Presidency position should be zoned to the South-East.
When contacted on the telephone, George told our correspondent that he would be running for chairmanship as well.