Disquiet in PDP over Okowa’s choice as Atiku’s running mate

From Ndubuisi Orji, Abuja

The dust raised by the nomination of Delta State Governor, Ifeanyi Okowa as vice presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) is yet to settle as aggrieved party leaders are weighing their options.

This is as the leadership of the party have  intensified efforts to pacify vexed members ahead of the commencement of its campaign for the 2023  general elections.

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Daily Sun gathered that most aggrieved leaders,including some of the governors who backed Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike as vice presidential candidate to Atiku Abubakar, are considering not participating actively in his presidential campaign.

Signs of dissent became evident when some of the governors, who rooted for Wike boycotted the unveiling of Okowa in Abuja.

The governors include Seyi Makinde, Oyo State; Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, Enugu; Okezie Ikpeazu, Abia and Samuel Ortom, Benue. Wike also stayed away from the event.

A top party source told Daily Sun that those aggrieved by Okowa’s emergence, realising that there is nothing they can do about it have decided to be indifferent to the affairs of the party.

Another source claimed that the lack of unity in the party and indifference of the governors stalled the grand finale of the PDP governorship campaign in Ekiti State,  last Thursday as it became difficult mobilising party leaders for the programme.

The source, who expressed disappointment over the poor performance of the PDP in the Ekiti gubernatorial poll said: “The recent issues in the party contributed greatly to our lose.”

Another official confirmed that feelings of resentments and disappointments were normal in an election contest where there were winners and losers, but the party has a dispute resolution mechanism to handle the issues.

The governors have not stated any position publicly or privately. Don’t forget that the constitution gives the presidential candidate the prerogative to choose his running mate. We have an effective dispute resolution mechanism and we are talking. I can tell you that the process is ongoing. What is paramount to every member of the PDP is not personal interest, but national issues. We recognise that when people feel aggrieved, feel offended, we have to reach out to them,” said the source.

Nevertheless, Daily Sun gathered that the dismal performance of the PDP in the just concluded Ekiti State governorship election is attributable to the indifference of some of the governors to the election.

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However, a member of the PDP National Executive Committee ( NEC) told Daily Sun that the party’s loss in Ekiti has more to do with alleged vote buying by the All Progressives Congress ( APC), than any other factor.

He explained that failure of the PDP to hold a grand rally prior to the election was as a result of alleged  refusal of the security agencies to grant them permission to hold the rally.

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By joshua

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