There are indications that the leadership of the Social Democratic Party has not submitted Prof. Jerry Gana’s name to the Independent National Electoral Commission as replacement for Mr Donald Duke as a result of an appeal over a court ruling on the party’s presidential candidate.
Duke was declared presidential candidate of the party after the primary election held in October 2018, but Gana immediately instituted a case against the result in court, arguing that the zoning and rotation formula of the party had been flouted.
But following the ruling, the party, alongside the National Chairman, Chief Olu Falae, and Secretary, Alhaji Shehu Gabam, among other top hierarchy, were listed as appellants challenging the high court judgment at the Court of Appeal.
The party had turned down Gana’s request to list his name as a replacement for Duke.
A source, who craved anonymity, told our correspondent on Saturday that the party had turned down the request outright during the week.
She said, “Prof Jerry Gana took the party to court and the party is appealing the judgment. As far as the party is concerned, Duke won the primary and the state chairmen are on his side. The party is not supporting Gana but a few people in the EXCO are supporting him (Gana).
“For instance, Prof Jerry Gana wanted the party to submit his application to INEC, but the party turned the request down on the grounds that they are appealing the judgment. His name is not with INEC.”
When contacted, the National Publicity Secretary of the party, Mr Alfa Mohammed, who declined to comment on the development, said all inquiries concerning the party should be directed to the National Vice Chairman of SDP (South), Prof Tunde Adeniran.
“Definitely you should know that the party submitted a name and the time for submission has lapsed. I do not want to comment on the development,” he said.
Attempts to speak with Adeniran to confirm if the party changed the name of its presidential candidate proved abortive as he did not return call to his mobile.