Atiku’s Running Mate: Ayu Moves To Scuttle Selection Process, Undermines 19-member Panel
Crisis is currently brewing in the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) over moves by the its national chairman, Iyorchia Ayu’s surreptitious moves in scuttling the recommendations of the 19-man panel convened to recommend a running mate for the presidential candidate, Alh. Atiku Abubakar, Pointblanknews.com authoritatively gathered.
The PDP had recently set up a 19-member committee chaired by former Senate President David Mark with the mandate of picking its vice-presidential candidate.
It was gathered that 16 out of the 19 members had recommended the Rivers State governor, Nyesom Wike as the vice presidential candidate.
The three other members against this, according to inside sources are former governors of Niger, Cross River and Jigawa; Babangida Aliyu, Liyel Imoke and Sule Lamido respectively.
However, upon transmission of the committee’s decision to the PDP national chairman, reports indicate that he began moves to jettison the David Mark-led panel report.
“The chairman is becoming a threat to the stability of the party. Once the David Mark-led panel report report reached the chairman indicating that Wike was the preferred candidate for the Vice Presidential slot, the Chairman decided to jettison the report instead telling the flagbearer, Alh Atiku Abubakar to choose from the three names himself.
“What then was the use of the panel and its report? We are aware that the chairman is doing this because of his preferred candidate as against the People’s choice.
“He is at loggerheads with other leaders of the party because of this and the implications for the party will be too grave” a source said.
It was also gathered that the Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike, and his Delta State counterpart, Ifeanyi Okowa are some names being considered for the VP slot.
Meanwhile, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has given parties June 17 deadline to submit the names of their presidential candidates and running mates.
It could be recalled that some party stalwarts had hitherto accused the national chairman, Iyorchia Ayu of being financially induced to curry his support for a particular candidate of the Southern flank of the country.