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Politics of Monday, 2 January 2023


‘Wike’s inordinate ambition cause of PDP crisis’

Governor Nyesom Wike Governor Nyesom Wike

Spokesman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Presidential Campaign, Mr. Charles Aniagwu, has said Rivers State Governor Nyesom Wike is working against the party’s quest to zone its presidential ticket to the Southeast.

Aniagwu accused Wike of influencing the party’s zoning committee, headed by Benue State Governor Samuel Ortom, of opening up the contest with the hope that he would win.

Speaking on Arise Television programme: “Prime Time”, Aniagwu, who is also the Delta State Commissioner for Information, said the ongoing crisis in the party was caused by Wike’s inordinate ambition to become the President.

According to him, Wike’s anger at the party’s presidential candidate, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, is misplaced because Ortom was the chairman of PDP’s zoning committee before the primary election was conducted.

The campaign spokesman said it was not Atiku that made it open for people to freely contest for the party’s ticket, but Ortom.

“In our quest for peace, we have allowed the danger of the single story to persist. When the party set up a Zoning Committee, it was headed by Governor Samuel Ortom of Benue State and a member of the G-5 governors.

“The committee threw the ticket open for the best to emerge and Atiku Abubakar was considered the most qualified to lead Nigeria’s rescue and rebuilding mission.

“Let me now give you a hint. When the issue of zoning was discussed, you know that Ortom was the chairman of the zoning committee.

“Atiku Abubakar was interested in micro zoning to the Southeast, but it was the same Nyesom Wike that frustrated it because he wanted to contest.

“It was not Atiku that made the zoning open to people to just go and contest. In this case, there was a contest between the South and the North, and Atiku was considered by members of the party as the man capable of leading Nigerians out of the woods.

“I think often times we undermine the value of our prayers as Nigerians. From the actions of Wike, you will know that the prayers of Nigerians are working.

“Because if in just Rivers State, you are subjecting everybody to the kind of torture we are seeing, which we never saw under military rule, imagine if he was in charge of the military.”

On calls for disciplinary measures against the five “rebel” governors in G-5, Aniagwu said the party was taking its time to ensure that all avenues for peace and compromise were explored.

“I know many people are wondering why the party is keeping quiet and neglecting the actions of Governor Wike and others. This is because the party wants to exhaust all avenues of ensuring that these individuals realise that the party has been able to bring them up to speed.

“Without the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), these individuals that are creating this crisis, where will they be? So, when individuals begin to progress along this line and think that the rest of us don’t matter, you begin to wonder what their calculation is, in any case,” he said.

The PDP campaign chief said the party would continue to appeal to the G-5 governors to return home and join hands in its rescue mission project.

“We do hope that the G-5 governors return home. But while we await their return, we will continue to engage Nigerians because that is where the power resides.

“Our presidential candidate is very busy interfacing with Nigerians, and we will continue to plead with Wike and accord him the respect he deserves as a governor and a great leader in our party.

“The very disturbing economic and security situation in the country is enough for any leader to sheathe his sword and help in taking decisions that can help the country to navigate through the very murky waters.

“That a man suffered defeat in a party’s primary that was very creditably organised is one thing to which we don’t understand the extent to which he is taking this fight,” Aniagwu said.