Nigeria’s People’s Democratic Party (PDP) holds its national convention today in the capital Abuja.
Today’s meeting will go ahead despite a court injunction by former chairman Uche Secondus to stop disputes on his chairmanship. The convention is meant to highlight party unity ahead of the 2023 presidential elections. PDP Chief Dr. Abubakar Saraki stressed the need for a candidate with strong leadership and the capacity to rule.
Nigeria has been riven with sectarian violence as minority groups in the south, such as the Yoruba, seek to break away from Nigeria into an independent state. Deepening distrust in government institutions makes the upcoming election critical for restoring faith in politics and restoring growth to Africa’s largest economy. The PDP recently settled on five front runners for the presidential ticket, with former VP Atika Abubakar the likely nominee.
Expect Abubakar to clinch the presidential nomination. A candidate with many political connections, strong finances and a wide support base in the north, he stands the best chance of winning against southern-based opposition. Medium-term, expect disaffected PDP members to defect to the opposition, weakening the Party’s chance of an election victory. Long-term, a PDP loss would likely bring continued crackdowns on minority groups.
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Wescott is a Copy-Editor and Senior Analyst. His thematic focuses are international security, politics, economics and public policy.