Politics

Wike Reveals How Atiku and His Surrogates Frustrated PDP Power Rotation Principles

Rivers State Governor Nyesom Wike flags off the construction of the Akpabu-Odido Road in Emohia Local Government Area on Monday, 2 January 2023.

Rivers State Governor Nyesom Ezenwo Wike has revealed how the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) candidate in the 2023 presidential elections in Nigeria, former Vice President Atiku Abubakar, and his surrogates and cohorts frustrated the party’s stabilising power rotation principles.

While speaking at Itu Bridge Head, venue of the flag-off of the Akpabu-Odido Road in Emohua Local Government Area on Monday, 2 January 2023, Governor Wike took a swipe at those accusing him and Governor Samuel Ortom of Benue State of frustrating the micro-zoning of the presidential ticket of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to South-East zone.

The Rivers State governor said he had always believed and supported concerted effort towards ensuring that the presidency was zoned to the south.

“I was one of those who led the campaign that the party’s chairmanship should go to the North because I believed the presidency should go to the South.

“I attended meetings of southern governors of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and other parties from Delta to Lagos to Enugu states, where we agreed that presidency should come to the south.”

He insisted that while southern cross-party consultations were going on, there were people in the PDP who were bent on frustrating the eventual zoning of the party’s presidential ticket to the South.

Such people, Governor Wike maintained, cannot now turn around to cast the blame on him and Governor Ortom to hide their scheme thinking they could deceive Nigerians.

“I woke up this morning and read where they said, how Wike and Ortom frustrated PDP’s micro-zoning of presidential ticket to South East. That was what the PDP presidential candidate, Atiku said.

“I keep on saying, they’ll be contradicting themselves, telling lies up and down, thinking that Nigerians don’t know. How can they say that I influenced Ortom, told him to allow and throw the ticket open?

The Rivers State governor said further, “Nigerians know those who are opposed to zoning of the party’s chairmanship first.

“And when the zoning committee was set up, this time, Atiku had gone to buy form to frustrate the recommendation of the zoning committee.

“So that when they have bought form, they could say, oh, there is no need of zoning, will you tell people to withdraw?”

The governor said it is rather note worthy that their gimmick is now hunting them because they were unfair to Nigerians.

“Yes, you don’t like Ortom, no problems. I know my own, you don’t like me, no problems. But I, my state gave you the highest support in 2019 both with logistics and by votes.

“You can’t deceive every Nigerians again. What I have stood for is equity, fairness and justice.

“So, saying that I and Ortom frustrated PDP micro-zoning to South East is nether here nor there. They know that they don’t want presidency to come to the South.”

Governor Wike urged the presidential candidate of the PDP to leave him out of the attendant challenges he is facing in the party.

He, however, stated that “a bad product is always difficult to sell, otherwise, former president Olusegun Obasanjo would have recommended Alhaji Atiku Abubakar to Nigerians having worked together with him.”

“But, instead of doing so,” Governor Wike noted, that “the former president chooses to endorse another presidential candidate, Mr. Peter Obi.”

The Rivers State governor insisted that if former president Obasanjo had refused to recommend Alhaji Atiku, then something must be fundamentally wrong.

Governor Wike opined that Alhaji Atiku should be more concerned about that loss of confidence from his former boss, and his coming election.

Commenting on the road project, he expressed gratitude to God that the Odido community will get modern road for the first time in their history during his administration.

The governor boasted that given the overwhelming joy expressed by the Odido people, it is difficult to believe that they will cast their votes for candidates of another party except the PDP.

Providing a description of the project, the Honourable Commissioner for Works, Rivers State, Dr. George-Kelly Dakorinima Alabo said the Akpabu-Odido Road also has a 22 metres long bridge.

According to the Rivers Works Commissioner, the project will be completed within agreed five months period, with the contractor already mobilised to site about two months ago.

Dr. George-Kelly said this will in turn enable members of the community drive on road for the first time into their homestead, enjoy associated development, gain easy access to their farms and improved commercial life.

Dr. Chidi Lloyd, Chairman of Emohua Local Government Area, said the Odido community is an island that have never seen asphalted road and is not linked to any neighbouring community.

Dr. Lloyd enthused that with the flag-off and commencement of actual construction work, it would be the end of the ordeal Odido people usually suffer.