PDP, the Peoples Democratic Party, has begun a gradual process to woo loyalists of its aggrieved governors led by Nyesom Wike, the Rivers State Governor, as part of efforts to decrease their influence in swaying the ballot during the general election in 2023.
Party Woos Wike's Loyalists
This follows the decision by the Governors of Oyo State, Seyi Makinde; Abia State, Okezie Ikpeazu; Enugu State, Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi; Benue State, Samuel Ortom, and Rivers State, Nyesom Wike; not to be a part of the presidential campaign council (PPC) after all the party's effort to appease them.
Wike and his allies withdrew from the party's campaign council due to the fact that they claimed it is not fair to the South geo-political zone for the party's national chairman and presidential candidate to come from the north, therefore calling for the removal of Iyorchia Ayu, the national chairman.
According to reports, the party doesn't want to take any chances. Hence it has started flirting with some of Wike's allies in Rivers states and other concerned states.
A source said the PCC is also persuading one of Benue State governor Samuel Ortom's aides and that the move is gradual.
The source added that Atiku's camp is in deep talks with Shima Ayati, the Special Adviser to Governor Ortom on Inter-Governmental Affairs and Liaison Services. Atiku is also talking with Terzunhwe Atser, the former boss of Benue Inland Revenue Service.
Timothy Osadolor, the Deputy National Youth Leader of the party, was reported to have said the plan is on course and that working with allies in the game of politics is acceptable.
Osadolor said that though the aggrieved party chieftains are important to the party, Nigeria is the greater picture, adding that the challenges of Nigerians are bigger than five governors or even 100 governors.
The PDP Deputy National Youth Leader further said that he knows the aggrieved governors have the power to sway elections. Still, he believes election dynamics have changed, and election processes are also changing. Hence, there is nothing much to fear.
Osadolor stated that they have declared that they have left the party or, better still, are working against the party either. But, with them, the task would be much easier, and without them, the job is doable but would be more difficult.