Perhaps looking to make The Economist forecast real, the BoT of the PDP yesterday revealed that it had set up a 12-member committee to discuss with the party’s 13 presidential aspirants, with the view to picking one of them as consensus candidate.
Those in the race for the presidential ticket of the PDP are, former Vice President, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar; Sokoto State Governor, Mr. Aminu Tambuwal; Gombe State Governor, Dr. Ibrahim Dankwambo; President of the Senate, Dr. Bukola Saraki; former Governor of Jigawa State, Alhaji Sule Lamido; former Governor of Kaduna State, Senator Ahmed Makarfi; and former Minister of Special Duties and Inter-governmental Affairs, Alhaji Tanimu Turaki (SAN).
Others are: former President of the Senate, Senator David Mark; former Governor of Kano State, Senator Rabiu Kwankwaso; former Governor of Sokoto State, Alhaji Attahiru Bafarawa; former Plateau State Governor, Senator Jonah Jang; Mr. Stanley Osifo and Dr. Baba Datti Ahmed.
The BoT had last week met in Abuja where they said they were working to ensure that they reduce the increasing number of presidential aspirants, but noted that they would not force any aspirant to step down.
However, the Chairman of the BoT, Senator Walid Jibrin, in a text message to THISDAY said that the committee would impress it on the aspirants, the dangers inherent in having such a large number of them in the race.
He stressed that the committee would not compel any of the aspirants to withdraw from the race, but rather they would be persuaded to put the interest of the party above their personal interests and ambitions.
Jibrin, who admitted that the present number of aspirants was complex, noted that there were fears that there could be disagreement among the contestants that could lead to major divisions after the primaries.