The leadership of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), has admitted that it made a mistake in not allowing proper contest during the primaries that produced former President, Goodluck Jonathan.
The party also apologised to Nigerians for its mistakes during the 16 years it presided over governance in Nigeria.
In a press conference on Tuesday in Abuja, the Chairman of the National Planning Committee of the conference, Dr Raymond Dokpesi, also condemned what it called the selective anti-corruption war of the present administration.
The PDP also alleged witch-hunt of its members.
Many Errors Committed
In the last General elections, the PDP not only lost the Presidency to the then opposition party, All Progressives Congress (APC), it lost its majority hold in both chambers of the National Assembly and many states that were considered its stronghold.
Mr Dokpesi attributed the defeat to many errors committed by the party and its leadership, but asked Nigerians to forgive and forget the past.
He said, “We are aware that there were errors we made. We admit that we made mistakes and we have not met the expectation of Nigerians and we tender unreserved apologies for these mistakes.
“You must have seen Ike Ekweremadu’s report on why we are apologising. There was no internal democracy, there was impunity within the party and there was no level-playing ground for members of the party.
He, however, gave an assurance that the party would do all it could to woo its founding fathers back to its fold.
“We are going to have Adamu Ciroma, Alex Ekwueme and some of the founding fathers who were hitherto alienated from the party at the conference to chart the way forward for the party.
“The party in 2010 and 2011 made the first fundamental mistake for not allowing the North to complete its term, but special recommendation were made to allow former President Goodluck Jonathan to complete it.
“The party came again, because they were not courageous enough to allow zoning and they supported the former president, and the party suffered defeat,” he said.
“Zoning principles of the party were abandoned and a gamut of all other issues, which would come out during the conference and for all these and the people who have been offended, for people whose toes were stepped upon, we also tender unreserved apology.
“We Are Begging”
“These are the reasons we are begging and apologising. We want to assure every founding member of the party that we deviated from their visions, and that’s why we are going to have all our founding fathers like Adamu Ciroma, Dr. Alex Ekwueme and other members of the G.34, to come and talk to us at the conference.
“For every and any mistake we have made, I therefore say, we tender our unreserved apologies”, he added.
He said that the committee’s mandate was to restructure the PDP by allowing the youth to take ownership of the party in driving national growth.
Dokpesi emphasised that for the party’s national conference to be meaningful, it must have youth representation comprising a male and a female from each local government area across the country.
According to him, youths whose age must not be more than 30 years, with a minimum of a degree or its equivalent, will take ownership of the party.
According to him, what the country currently has under President Muhammadu Buhari does not have youth representation.