By Davies Iheamnachor, PORT HARCOURT
The Rivers State governor, Chief Nyesom Wike, has said the comment by the former Vice President, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, that he would always clinch the ticket of the People’s Democratic Party, PDP, meant taking delegates of the party for granted.
Wike also has said the outcome of the PDP presidential primaries would shock Nigerians, noting that whoever emerges of all the aspirants should rest assured that the entire party would rally around and make sure that he wins the 2023 presidential election.
Wike, while speaking in Port Harcourt on Sunday, said the comment by former Vice President and PDP presidential candidate in the 2019 election, Atiku Abubakar that he will always clinch the party could amount to taking convention delegates for granted.
According to a statement by his Special Assistant on Media, Kelvin Ebiri, Wike said: “I didn’t expect him frankly speaking to say that he will always take the ticket of the party. That is going too far and taking the delegates for granted.”
He said he is committed to doing anything that will ensure PDP returns to power in 2023, and begin once again the process of rebuilding the nation after years of All Progressives Congress (APC) poor governance.
The Rivers State governor, who urged PDP members to resist making divisive utterances, declared that the outcome of the party’s presidential election will shock many.
He said: “People should watch, there will be a shock as far as PDP convention is concerned. People should watch what is going to happen. People like to underrate so many persons and it is not good in politics.”
Speaking on the timetable just released by the Independent National Electoral Committee (INEC) timetable over the weekend, Governor Wike expressed confidence that the National Executive Committee (NWC) of the PDP will ensure the party abides by the timetable.
“We are a law-abiding party. The party will soon meet, the NEC will meet and find the way forward on how we will put our house in order and make sure we religiously follow the timetable of INEC without violating any provision of the law and guidelines that INEC may have produced,” he said.
The Governor commended PDP leadership in Plateau, Cross River and Ondo State for the sterling performance of the party in Saturday’s bye-election, attributed the victory of the PDP in the Jos North/Bassa federal constituency in Plateau State to the recent decision of the former Plateau State governor, Jonah Jang and former Minister of the Federal Capital Territory (FTC), Senator Jeremiah Useni to set aside their differences and work for the interest of the party.
He also lauded the PDP for winning the Akpabuyo State Constituency bye-election in Cross River State, irrespective of the violence unleashed by the APC government in the State.