Wike Vs Atiku: Nigeria’s Opposition PDP Moves to Reconcile Warring Factions

Wike Vs Atiku Nigeria's Opposition PDP Moves to Reconcile Warring Factions (News Central TV)

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Board of Trustees (BoT) will tomorrow convene to mediate in the lingering post-convention crisis between two warring gladiators – Rivers State Governor Nyesom Wike and Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, presidential candidate of the party.

The opposition party has been battling to offer a unified front since it concluded its primary in May to elect the presidential flag-bearer.

In the aftermath of which, Governor Wike, favoured by a majority in the party was sidestepped for the Governor of Delta State, Ifeanyi Okowa, as running mate to Atiku.

The chairman of the BoT, Walid Jibrin announced yesterday that it will hold a crucial meeting to speed up ongoing reconciliation moves in the party.

Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, presidential candidate of the party (PDP)

The meeting is expected to address concerns raised by aggrieved Wike-led camp. The Wike camp at their meeting on Sunday, in Abuja were said to have insisted on the removal of the National Chairman, Iyorchia Ayu.

The Wike camp also wants Atiku to sign an undertaking that he would spend only one term in office before they pledge their support for him.

From the list of demands to be considered by the BoT are that all members of the Wike team will be considered for appointment should the party win the presidential election next year.

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Jibrin, in a statement said the Wednesday meeting would consider all the issues and come up with appropriate recommendations.

“The BoT is the highest advisory body and conscience of the party. After the BoT meeting, we will meet with Wike and all aggrieved members and all past presidential aspirants. It is my prayer as Chairman of BoT that the PDP will remain strong to win all elections in 2023,” he said.

The BoT Chairman maintained that the challenges were not even up to the level of the crisis rocking the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), adding, “I want to assure everyone that all plans are on the ground to bring all members as one and united because what is happening in PDP can never be compared with the situation in APC and their plans to bring the religious issue of Muslim president and vice president.”

The issue of Ayu’s resignation has been on the front burner because of a reported gentleman agreement, which had requested that Ayu should resign should the presidential candidate of the party emanate from the North, but following the emergence of Atiku, it was learnt that the song changed to allow Ayu stay in office till the conclusion of the general elections.

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Rising from a closed-door emergency meeting held at the Rivers State governor’s lodge in Abuja on Sunday, it was gathered that there are overtures for the two camps – Wike and Atiku to harmonise and work for the success of the party.

Rivers State Governor Nyesom Wike

Those at the meeting included Governors Wike, Seyi Makinde (Oyo), Okezie Ikpeazu (Abia), Samuel Ortom (Benue) and Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi (Enugu).

Others were former governors Donald Duke (Cross River), Gabriel Suswam (Benue), Olusegun Mimiko (Ondo), Seriake Dickson (Bayelsa), and Ibrahim Idris (Kogi) and Jonah Jang (Plateau).

Philip Aduda, Senate minority leader, was also at the meeting with some members of the PDP National Assembly caucus.

In a recent interview with Arise TV, Atiku said he did not pick Wike as his running mate, because he wanted someone he could work with ‘amicably.’

“Governor Wike was not rejected. Nobody was rejected at the party. But you must understand that it’s the prerogative of the candidate to pick his running mate — a running mate he believes he can work with amicably, and then also deliver the policies of the party, and also try to unify the country.

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“Governor Wike is a brilliant politician. He’s courageous, and tenacious. I believe he has a future in the political evolution of this country. It’s not a question of rejection. Certainly, not. I think it’s too harsh a word to say that we rejected governor Wike,” Atiku said.

In a retort to Atiku’s interview, Wike tweeted that Nigerians would know the truth about recent events in the party when he finally speaks.

However speaking with reporters on his return from Spain, being his first public comment on the crisis that trailed Atiku’s refusal to select him as his running mate — Wike accused Atiku of lying against him.


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