Akwa Ibom State Governor, Udom Emmanuel has made a last minute effort to woo the five aggrieved governors of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, back into accepting the presidential candidate of the party, Atiku Abubakar.
The aggrieved governors led by the Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike had vowed to endorse a presidential candidate outside the PDP’s candidate who they accused of destroying the party’s zoning formula.
The PDP aggrieved governors dubbed G5 have been making unprecedented and loud moves to announce a candidate from the South that they would support during the 2023 polls.
They had publicly denounced their support to Atiku for his insistence to retain Iyorchia Ayu, the party’s national chairman from the North as the National Chairman of the party.
The pendulum is swinging between the APC presidential candidate, Bola Ahmed Tinubu and that of the Labour party, Mr Peter Obi, but the guess on whom they would settle for remained bleak following their frolicking with Mr Tinubu recently and Peter Obi initially.
The governors, who include: Nyesom Wike of Rivers, Okezie Ikpeazu of Abia, Seyi Makinde of Oyo, Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi of Enugu, Samuel Ortom of Benue State were of the view that both the presidential candidate and the national chairman of the party should not come from the same zone and that for equity and fair play the national chairman should go so that a chairman from the south would emerge.
Their grievances they had registered through their conspicuous absence at every presidential campaign rally of the PDP across the nation.
But, the Chairman of the Presidential Campaign council recognizing the powerful influence of the five governors, especially in the South South, waded in to resolve the crisis so that the PDP will have a united front and better chance to coast to victory in 2023 election
Gov Emmanuel in a meeting with Gov Samuel Ortom in Akwa Ibom state governor’s lodge recently said the leadership of the party was open to peace with the G-5 governors.
He noted that the governors have structures and capacity and should not be neglected if the party wanted to emerge victorious seamlessly, noting that the rift has reached a point where sacrifices must be made so that there can be peace and victory for the party
Recognizing the importance of unity in achieving any purpose, governor Emmanuel said, “We all came in as a family, whether you like it or not, these are brothers even in the parable of the lost sheep in the Bible only one sheep got missing and Jesus Christ left the rest and went after that one, how much more when you have brothers that are up to five
“You turn around on a campaign platform you don’t see them suddenly you will feel you need them, these are people you started together, I think I still feel empty that we are all not together on a campaign platform
“Someone like me I am pursuing peace and I want peace to reign and once we can achieve that, our party will coast into victory.
“Governor Ortom made a statement and I am sure you listened to him. I agree one hundred percent with him. We are ready to make peace and I can assure our party that these are governors who have structures, and something to show, these are governors who have capacity. We will do everything possible to put the house together for the 2023 campaign.”
On his part, Gov Samuel Ortom noted that dialogue remained the key towards accommodating the interest of the party stalwarts, adding that the aggrieved governors never turned their back on dialogue and reconciliation when terms are met to fit with their interest.
“We have never said we have turned our back on dialogue and reconciliation, if the terms are met, why not, we will work if it fits in our own interest”, he added, insisting that disregarding them despite their respective huge support bases, was not the best solution.
However, shortly after the meeting, hopes were high that resolution and reconciliation were underway until the G-5 jetted out to London to carefully choose between Ahmed Tinubu and Peter Obi to endorse before the polls, though it was gathered that they did not reach a consensus on the candidate to choose.
Still undeterred by the adamancy of the G-5, Gov Emmanuel visited governor Wike in Port Harcourt.
Though Gov Emmanuel claimed that it was a brotherly visit on Wike but it was quite clear that his visit was in connection with the issue at hand.
Emmanuel, accompanied by Governor Samuel Ortom of Benue State, held a closed-door meeting with Wike that lasted for three hours. The outcome of the meeting is still sketchy.
Lagos Post Online,
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