By Ogechi Okorie
Abuja – The People’s Redemption Party (PRP) held it’s national convention on Saturday in Abuja and returned Alhaji Falalu Bello as its National Chairman.
Falalu was re-elected through consensus.
Others members of the party’s National Executive Committee (NEC) elected include National Secretary, Babatunde Alli; and National Treasurer, Dr Abdullahi Bayawo, among others.
In his acceptance speech, Bello appreciated the party for electing them to serve, pledging their commitment to the party and the nation.
Bello said there was the need for party members to work in unity to win the 2023 general elections.
He said that with unity, new Electoral Act and recent innovations by the Independent National Electoral Commission, PRP had the potential to win the presidential and more elections in the 2023 general elections.
He urged members to embark on membership drive across the nation, disclosing that the party would soon role out it guidelines for the 2023 general elections.
Bello assured all presidential aspirants of the party that the PRP leadership would provide a fair and level-playing ground for the party’s candidate to emerge.
Earlier in his welcome remarks, Bello recalled that PRP sponsored 385 candidates in the 2018 general elections and won two House of Representatives seats for Bauchi State, while it also came 3rd in terms of votes in Bauchi, Kano,
Katsina, Kaduna, and Benue States.
He added that between 2020-2022, PRP participated in 11 elections and bye elections with progressives performance because of its more presence on the ground as well as the caliber of candidates it fielded.
He listed the achievements of his the party’s outgoing National Working Committee to include creation of online registration platform and website (prpnigeria.ng) that made PRP the first party in Nigeria to register its members online.
“We are going to ride on, this is to have a robust national membership register, list of leadership of the party at all levels, news on the party, etc.”
Bello listed indiscipline and insufficient fund as parts of the challenges facing the party.
He urged delegates to appreciate the need for members to pay for membership fees and the N50 annual subscription fee for the party to thrive.
“Creation of a faction for the party and numerous court cases that faced the party, are clear manifestation of indiscipline in the party and these must be stopped if the party is to make fast and meaningful progress.
“The significant amendments to be taken at this meeting will make it an offence for any member to go to court without exhausting internal dispute mechanism.
“Further to this, the National Working Committee has set up a committee to handle the factionalization in the party. It is hoped these would address the problems created by indiscipline.”
Bello also disclosed that so far, the PRP had been invited in merger and alliances with four groups.
These parties, according to him, include the National Consultative Front (NC Front), led by Prof. Pat Utomi, that initially started with five parties: the African Democratic Congress (ADC), Social Democratic Party (SDP), Action Democratic Party (ADP) and Zenith Labour Party (ZLP).
Others, according to him, include Northern Leaders and Consultative Front (NLCF) group of Northern politicians, led by Dr Usman Bugaje; the Peoples Alternative Political Development (PAPD), a pan Nigerian organization.
He also added that “We Together (We2geda)”, another Pan Nigeria Movement, headed by Alhaji Ibrahim Abdulkarim, of mostly young and middle-aged persons currently in various political parties inclusive of PRP, is desirous of getting a platform to participate in elections.
“On the basis of submission on Mergers and Alliances made to the National Working Committee (NWC) meeting of the party held on March 5 and decisions taken on these, the NEC has advised the groups that:
“The PRP is prepared to be adopted by any political party which believe in its principles provided such as arrangement will not result in the party changing its Name and logo,
“Members of the groups were advised to join the party so that issues of interest will be discussed and agreed with them, and where the PRP structure does not exist or is weak, structures of adopting parties could be collapsed into PRPs.
“Of the four groups that have been advised, members of the We2geda have started to register with the party as six (6) of their leaders from Adamawa, Kano,
Katsina, Plateau, Zamfara and Borno have joined the party and will make bring along their followers in the coming weeks.”
Bello who said that PRP is attracting persons willing to make the party grow, added that all respective branches need to open up to accommodate people that believe in PRP principles.
“We have a great party in our hands and can make it grow, prosper and take over power in Nigeria and run governments as done in old Kaduna and Kano States in 1979,” he said.