The Youth wing of the Pan Niger Delta Forum (PANDEF), says that the purported endorsement of former vice-president and Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar by PANDEF was done by “few hungry old men” who has no electoral value in the Niger Delta region.
BigPen Online understands this is coming barely a week after Itsekiri elders and leaders under the auspices of Itsekiri Leaders of Thought (ILT) had dissociated themselves from the PANDEF over the reported endorsement of the PDP presidential candidate.
The group’s position was contained in a statement after its emergency meeting in Yenagoa, Bayelsa state on Tuesday.
They condemned what they regarded as the desperation of an old dying generation of elders that lack integrity.
Publicity Secretary, of the PANDEF youth wing, Chief Sara-Igbe Anabs, said that at no time did they meet as a body to take that decision.
According to him: “The leader can say anything, but it should be on record that PANDEF has not met to take any of such decision.
“As far as I am concerned, we have not met as a body and besides, the constitution of PANDEF bans the forum from being partisan.
The statement signed by its Youth Coordinator, Famous Daunemigha, leaders from Edo and Delta state, ‘General’ Don Ben and Abule Ateh, said PANDEF was apolitical and therefore the endorsement of Atiku by a few elders was null, void and unconstitutional.
The statement reads, “Number one PANDEF never endorsed Atiku, because what you saw is a bunch of old dying generation that lack intergity, PANDEF is a well organized body, made up of a very well enlightened people cut across the whole of Niger Delta states.
“PANDEF has a constitution, we are apolitical, it’s just a bunch of old men who collected money from Atiku and Obi, trying to fill their pocket even when they are dying.
“PANDEF never had any meeting, or Congress, where we agreed to endorse any political party. What they did, was just some few greedy old dying men lack of integrity that’s what happened.
Speaking at the end of their meeting, the youth coordinator, said there was never any meeting and so it very clear that the bunch of self seeking elders did the endorsement and the announcement on their own.
He said, It’s very very clear, I am an APC member, but I’ve never used PANDEF at any point because we know that the constitution says that we should be apolitical, we all have rights to support whatever political party but not to endorse any person or a candidate.
“PANDEF, have not met, we never had a Congress at any time, to decide such endorsement, it was a bunch of greedy old people.
“They are aware that they have disgraced themselves and as far as I am concerned, they can never gather in any place. This bunch of elders, they can never gather, and they don’t have what it takes to gather.
“Every time they are in government, they want to eat from government money freely, that’s why our state governors, cannot even develop our state because when they just give these few elderly people some few money, then they (elders) go to the press, and make statements in support of such government.
“That’s is why the Niger Delta region is still lacking behind in development, they are gullible elders without any self dignity.”