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Plans are underway by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to prune the number of presidential aspirants ahead of the primary slated for May 28-29.
A presidential screening committee set up by the PDP leadership last Friday cleared 15 of 17 aspirants jostling for the ticket and disqualified two.
The chairman of the committee, Senator David Mark, said the two aspirants were disqualified because they failed to meet the screening requirements.
The disqualified aspirants, whose identities are being concealed by the committee, will today appear before the party’s Presidential Screening Appeal Panel
The 25-member Appeal Panel is chaired by the PDP National Chairman, Dr. Iyorchia Ayu.
Membership of the Appeal Panel comprise the 19 members of the National Working Committee (NWC) and six members of the Board of Trustees (BoT).
A source close to the panel confirmed on the telephone that the panel will hear complaints from the two disqualified aspirants. He declined to give the names of the affected aspirants.
However, stakeholders are said to be worried about having 15 aspirants on the ballot for the primary.
The stakeholders, who believed that 15 are a crowd, have requested the aspirants to discuss among themselves, with a view to reducing the number to three or four.
A party source confirmed that the matter might be tabled at the National Executive Committee (NEC) meeting tomorrow.
The source, who craved anonymity, however said that none of the 15 aspirants had officially been informed about the move.
The DIrector of Contact and Mobilisation of the Aminu Tambuwal presidential campaign team, Dr. Nicholas Msheliza, said the Tambuwal camp was not aware of the move.
Msheliza, said on phone: “I am hearing this from you for the first time. Nobody has contacted us on this matter and we are not aware of such”.
Dr. Msheliza however, said the Tambuwal camp would keep an open mind on issues relating to his principal’s presidential aspiration.