Peoples Democratic Party (Nigeria)

Peoples Democratic Party
National ChairmanUmar Illiya
SecretarySamuel Anyanwu
National Youth LeaderMuhammed Kadade Suleiman
Chair of Governors ForumBala Mohammed
Founded1998; 26 years ago (1998)
HeadquartersWadata Plaza, Michael Okpara Way, Wuse Zone 5, Abuja
IdeologyConservative liberalism
Political positionCentre-right
Regional affiliationDemocrat Union of Africa
Colours Green, white, red
SloganPower to the people
Seats in the Senate
36 / 109
Seats in the House
118 / 360
13 / 36
Seats in state Houses of Assembly
329 / 991

The Peoples Democratic Party [sic] is one of the two major contemporary political parties in Nigeria, along with its main rival, the All Progressives Congress.

Its policies generally lie towards the centre-right of the political spectrum. It won every presidential election between 1999 and 2011 and was, until the 2015 elections, the governing party in the Fourth Republic, although sometimes amid a few controversial electoral circumstances.


PDP National Headquarters, Abuja

In 1998, the PDP in its first presidential primary election held in Jos, Plateau State, North Central Nigeria nominated former military leader Olusegun Obasanjo who had just been released from detention as political prisoner as the presidential candidate in the elections of February 1999, with Atiku Abubakar (Governor-Elect of Adamawa State and a former leading member of the Social Democratic Party) as his running mate. They won the presidential election and were inaugurated 29 May 1999.

In the legislative election held on 12 April 2003, the party won 54.5% of the popular vote and 223 out of 360 seats in the House of Representatives, and 76 out of 109 seats in the Senate. Its candidate in the presidential election of 19 April 2003, Olusegun Obasanjo, was re-elected with 61.9% of the vote. In December 2006, Umaru Yar'Adua (formerly of the Peoples Redemption Party and the Social Democratic Party) was chosen as the presidential candidate of the ruling PDP for the April 2007 general election, receiving 3,024 votes from party delegates; his closest rival, Rochas Okorocha, received only 372 votes. Yar'Adua was eventually declared the winner of the 2007 general elections, held on April 21, and was sworn in on May 29, 2007, amid widespread allegations of electoral fraud. In the Nigerian National Assembly election, the party won 260 out of 360 seats in the House of Representatives and 85 out of 109 seats in the Senate. At the PDP's 2008 National Convention, it chose Prince Vincent Ogbulafor as its National Chairman on March 8, 2008. Ogbulafor, who was the PDP's National Secretary from 2001 to 2005, was the party's consensus choice for the position of National Chairman, selected as an alternative to the rival leading candidates Sam Egwu (who was backed by Obasanjo) and Anyim Pius Anyim. All 26 other candidates, including Egwu and Anyim, withdrew in favor of Ogbulafor. Meanwhile, Alhaji Abubakar Kawu Baraje was elected as National Secretary.

In 2011, after the Peoples Democratic Party saw members defect for the Action Congress of Nigeria, some political commentators suspected that the PDP would lose the Presidency. Following PDP candidate Goodluck Jonathan's victory in the 2011 elections, it was reported that there were violent protests from northern youth.


The longtime slogan of the Peoples Democratic Party has been "Power to the people". During the party's National Convention in Port Harcourt, Rivers State on 21 May 2016, David Mark, a former President of the Senate of Nigeria, introduced "Change the change" as the party's campaign slogan for the 2019 general elections. However, in 2018, the chairman of the party's board of trustees stated that neither the slogan nor the party's umbrella symbol would be changed.

Political ideology

The party has a neoliberal stance in its economic policies and maintains a conservative stance on certain social issues, such as same-sex relations.

Economic issues

The PDP favors free-market policies which support economic liberalism, and limited government regulation. In 2003, President Olusegun Obasanjo and Finance Minister Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala embarked on an economic reform program, which reduced government spending through conservative fiscal policies and saw the deregulation and privatization of numerous industries in Nigerian services sector โ€” notably the Nigerian Telecommunications (NITEL) industry. On the other hand, the PDP adopts a more leftist stance towards poverty and welfare. In 2005, President Obasanjo launched Nigeria's first National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) to ensure that every Nigerian has access to basic health care services.

The PDP strives to maintain the status quo on oil revenue distribution. Though the PDP government set up the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) to address the needs of the oil-producing Niger Delta states, it has rebuffed repeated efforts to revert to the 50% to 50% federal-to-state government revenue allocation agreement established in 1966 during the First Republic.

Social issues

The PDP is against same-sex relations, and favors social conservatism on moral and religious grounds. In 2007, the PDP-dominated National Assembly sponsored a bill to outlaw homosexual relations, making it punishable by law for up to 14 years in prison.

The party is a moderate advocate of state-autonomy and religious freedom for the Nigerian states. In the year 2000 the introduction of Islamic law in some states in Northern Nigeria triggered sectarian violence in Kaduna and Abia states. The PDP-led federal government refused to bow to pressure from the southern, predominantly Christian states to repeal the law, and instead opted for a compromise where Islamic law would only apply to Muslims.

Tunde Ayeni, chairman of the PDP fundraising event in December 2014 who donated N2 billion was involved in the mismanagement of bank's funds.

2015 elections

In the 2015 elections, the incumbent president and PDP presidential nominee, Goodluck Jonathan, was defeated by General Muhammadu Buhari of the All Progressives Congress by 55% to 45%, losing by 2.6 million votes, out of approximately 28.6 million valid votes cast. Out of Nigeria's 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory, General Muhammadu Buhari won 21 states while President Goodluck Jonathan won 15 states and the Federal Capital Territory.

2019 elections

In the 2019 elections, former vice president Atiku Abubakar and PDP presidential candidadate together with his party rejected the outcome of the elections as INEC was yet to conclude the process and make an official pronouncement. On the 25th of February, PDP National Party Chair, Prince Uche Secondus alleged that the result as announced by INEC were incorrect.

PDP supporters during a political rally at the party headquarters

2020 elections

Godwin Obaseki won re-election as governor of Edo State on 20 September 2020 PDP with 307,955 votes, defeating sixteen opponents. Security was tight and voters took health precautions in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic that has infected 57,000 and killed 1,100.

Election results

Presidential elections

Election Party candidate Running mate Votes % Result
1999 Olusegun Obasanjo Atiku Abubakar 18,738,154 62.78% Elected Green tickY
2003 24,456,140 61.94% Elected Green tickY
2007 Umaru Yar'Adua Goodluck Jonathan 24,638,063 69.82% Elected Green tickY
2011 Goodluck Jonathan Namadi Sambo 22,495,187 58.89% Elected Green tickY
2015 12,853,162 44.96% Lost Red XN
2019 Atiku Abubakar Peter Obi 11,262,978 41.22% Lost Red XN
2023 Ifeanyi Okowa 6,984,520 29.07% Lost Red XN

House of Representatives and Senate elections

Election House of Representatives Senate
Votes % Seats +/โ€“ Position Votes % Seats +/โ€“ Position
1999 57.1%
206 / 360
Increase 206 Increase 1st 56.4%
59 / 109
Increase 59 Increase 1st
2003 15,927,807 54.49%
223 / 360
Increase 17 Steady 1st 15,585,538 53.69%
76 / 109
Increase 17 Steady 1st
262 / 360
Increase 39 Steady 1st
85 / 109
Increase 9 Steady 1st
2011 13,312,817 46.63%
203 / 360
Decrease 59 Steady 1st
140 / 360
Decrease 63 Decrease 2nd
49 / 109
Decrease 15 Decrease 2nd
2019 11,283,714 41.34%
115 / 360
Decrease 25 Steady 2nd 11,608,069 41.87%
45 / 109
Decrease 4 Steady 2nd
119 / 360
Increase 4 Steady 2nd
37 / 109
Decrease 8 Steady 2nd
PDP office along Kafanchan-Kagoro road, Kafanchan

See also

This page was last updated at 2024-03-15 03:01 UTC. Update now. View original page.

All our content comes from Wikipedia and under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License.


If mathematical, chemical, physical and other formulas are not displayed correctly on this page, please useFirefox or Safari