Onyebuchi Ezigbo in Abuja
The Democratic Peoples Congress (DPC) has urged President Muhammadu Buhari to listen the voices of reason and genuine concerns of Nigerians not to offer himself for re-election in the 2019 presidential election.
The party said at stage of Nigeriaâ€™s development, what is required is a younger, more vibrant and visionary leader who can galvanize our inert potentials to make the nation great.
Addressing the first National Convention of DPC in Abuja yesterday the National Chairman, Mr. Segun Peters, also advocated for the amendment of the constitution to allow for a maximum of three terms limit for our lawmakers and to provide for proportional representation in the both the national and state assemblies.
Speaking on the current political intrigues associated with the re-election bid of President Buhari, the DPC chairman said it would the nation better if the aging president would serve out his first tenure and allow younger elements in his party to contest in the next election.
â€œI would to call on President Buhari to please harken to the voice Nigerians not to contest the 2019 presidential election. It may be wise for Mr. President to support a quality, visionary and honest Nigerian to succeed him in 2019 which will earn him a heroic celebration from Nigerians for life,â€ he said.
The DPC chairman said the party supports the ongoing constitutional amendment at the National Assembly.
However, Peters said his party would see the current practice of the winner takes all syndrome jettisoned and a more liberal and accommodating principle of proportional representation made to take its place in our polity.
According to Peters, several countries have embraced proportional representation as the panacea to winner takes all syndrome that bred acrimony, violence, election rigging and malpractices.
â€œWe make bold to say that the winner takes all syndrome that characterised our democracy will derail our democracy if we did not stop it and embrace a process that ensures fairness and equitable distribution of power. That is why the DPC has recommended Proportional Representation in the legislative arm of Government at the State and National Assemblies.
â€œIn proportional representation, seats are allocated in parliament based on the performance of various political parties that participated in the election and not by the party with the majority of the votes, as it is presently the case in the country.
â€œSimilarly, we are advocating for a maximum of Three Terms limit for our lawmakers. We can no longer accept a situation where the legislature has become the retirement homes for former governors and their cronies in perpetuity whether they are fulfilling the electoral mandates of their people or not.
â€œThis term limit will also give opportunity for vibrant young men and women to have the opportunity of representing their senatorial districts and constituencies at the state and national assemblies,â€ he said.
Peters also said this that in line with its support for the restructuring of the country, DPC is pushing for the autonomy for local government council.
He further expressed the position of the party on the issue of over aged voting, condemning the practice and urging the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to arrest the trend.
Regarding the forthcoming governorship elections in Ekiti and Osun State, the National Chairman said that DPC is going to field candidates for the two election.