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12 critical takeaways from Governor Wike’s Friday media chat in Port Harcourt

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The media chat of Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State in Port Harcourt on Friday revealed 10 critical issues in the lingering impasse in the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

  1. Wike’s outburst and southern agitations mainly targets Ayu, not Atiku
  2. Southern PDP members have accepted the emergence of Atiku Abubakar as PDP presidential candidate for the 2023 elections and willing to work with the party for victory.

According to Wike, “the party has held its presidential primaries, Atiku has won. There is nothing anyone can do about it; we have put that behind us.”

  1. PDP’s refusal to zone the presidency to the south, laid the foundation of the impasse in the party.

Wike had argued: “if the APC that has just had President Muhammadu Buhari in office can zone the presidency to the south after eight years, why would PDP which has zoning as a rule take it to the north.”

  1. PDP National Chairman, Iyorchia Ayu, carries burden of integrity test, wants Ayu to fulfil his promise to resign if a Northern presidential candidate emerged.; but refuses to hold on to his promise after the emergence of Atiku Abubakar.
  2. Ayu must make sacrifice and resign for peace to return to PDP.

Wike declared that “Ayu must make sacrifice, resignation is not removal.”

  1. Ayu exploited delegates to PDP national convention and manipulated the presidneitla primary to favour Atiku.
  2. Ayu held meetings with retired generals. Wike said, the meetings, were “to ensure that I did not emerge the flag bearer of the party. He even vowed to resign if I should win the party’s ticket.”
  3. Questioned the capacity of Atiku to unify Nigeria if he cannot unify the PDP.

According to Wike, “Atiku should show that he has capacity to unify Nigeria. he should resolve the crisis in the PDP on the basis of political expediency, not law. A party that is in the opposition and serious to win an election cannot be as arrogant as the PDP. If the PDP cannot restructure itself to correct the marginalisation in the PDP, Nigerians are now doubting the party’s capacity to unite the country.”

  1. Wike also alleged breach of promise by Atiku.

According to the Rivers governor, “He visited me after his emergence and promised that Ayu would resign, but he failed to actualise it. He also met us in London and promised that Ayu must go but we were surprised that he went to a gathering and cited constitutional issues.”

  1. Atiku cannot win presidential election without winning Lagos, Kano or Rivers state(s). Wike said Atiku cannot win with the kind of people surrounding him who have low political value and cannot win elections. Therefore, Ayu must go!
  2. Wike felt that suspending from PDP will be disastrous for the party.

Wike declared: “I dare the party to sanction me. They should do it. Who will sanction me? Those, who left the party cannot sanction me. If they do it, they know what I can do. Suspend me, what you see, you take it.”

  1. No southern support for Atiku, except Ayu resigns for a southern national chairman for justice and equity in the party.

According to Wike, “If at the end, the party refuses to meet our demand, we will meet again to take a decision on our next strategies for the election. Haven’t you seen where a senatorial candidate lost in an area while the governorship candidate from the same party won in that same place?”

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