After actions taken by Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State and his associates to diminish the chances of his favored candidate, Peter Obi, former Vice President Atiku Abubakar, who was not harboring any presidential ambitions after 2019, reportedly decided to enter the 2023 campaign.
According to Anaedoonline.ng, Peter Obi, the Labour Party’s nominee for president, abandoned the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) prior to the party’s presidential primaries.
Party insiders told Newsmen that there was a covert plan to hand the presidency to the South-East in 2023, with Peter Obi and Anyim Pius Anyim identified as the two leading candidates.
According to reports, Atiku, Delta State Governor Ifeanyi Okowa, Edo State Governor Godwin Obaseki, and Senate President Bukola Saraki all supported Peter Obi.
Governor Aminu Tambuwal, former House Deputy Speaker Emeka Ihedioha, and Governor Douye Diri of Bayelsa State supported Anyim. It was believed that Tambuwal would win the race to be Anyim’s running mate.
In an effort to force Obi, the Atiku-led coalition pushed for the party’s national secretary to come from Anambra State, with Okowa gearing up for a return to the Senate with a key post in mind.
A source said: “Remember that Peter Obi, Ihedioha, and Achike Udenwa refused and asked that the position of secretary should go to the appropriate place mentioned, but Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi and Okezie Ikpeazu refused.
“Of course, you know that they are the only two governors of the PDP in the South-East, their choice will not be easy to reject.”
The move by Wike’s camp to take the slot from Peter Obi was the beginning of the distress that Obi faced from his brother governors from the South-East.
“After 2019, Oga (Atiku) had exhausted much of his money and he was not really inclined towards running again, but we kept on mounting pressure on him that he was the only one who could stop Wike,” the source involved in the process told Newsmen on Sunday.
The source stated that Wike’s camp was also able to prevent the Governor Samuel Ortom-led committee from zoning the presidency to the South-East or North-East.
“You can see that Ortom is part of Wike’s camp and the whole plot was to throw it open so that Wike can come in and that was what they did exactly,” the source revealed.
Another source, privy to the development, said: “You would remember that initially, no PDP governor was backing Atiku, but things changed when they realized that the only person who could stop Wike was Atiku and that was why they gravitated towards him. If you don’t know, there were also signs that Atiku had encouraged Obi to run, but all that changed with the attitude of the Wike camp.’
“That is why you should not blame Atiku for the zoning issue or even Okowa as having betrayed the South.”
Follow us on Facebook
The opinions, beliefs and viewpoints expressed by the author and forum participants on this website do not necessarily reflect the opinions, beliefs and viewpoints of Anaedo Online or official policies of the Anaedo Online.