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‘Ayu single-handedly picked Gov Okowa,’ Afegbua claims PDP set to boil



Prince Kazeem Afegbua, a staunch ally of Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State, on Friday alleged that the choice of Governor Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta State, as running mate to Atiku Abubakar, Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) standard bearer in the 2023 presidential poll, was unpopular.

He said, “PDP Chairman, Iyorchia Ayu, single-handedly picked Governor Okowa as Atiku’s running mate against the recommendations of the selection committee comprising of Governors, National Assembly members and others.”

Claiming that he has knowledge of growing resentments among party members, he said that the PDP was set to boil over the development. “I have received phone calls from some party members threatening to resist Ayu’s imposition if the choice of Governor Okowa is not reversed in 24 hours.”

Read also: ‘Why Okowa’s choice is significant for PDP,’ Ex-aviation minister, Chidoka

Afegbua further claimed that the absence of key party stakeholders, like Governors and National Assembly members, at the unveiling of Governor Okowa was a clear signal that something was amiss.

Recalling how the PDP Chairman, Ayu, openly embraced the action of Governor Aminu Tambuwal who stepped down at the presidential primaries to slow Governor Wike’s progress, Afegbua alleged a hijack of the party by Atiku and the Chairman.

Afegbua who slammed the PDP for picking Okowa as the running mate to Atiku, said it was a disservice to Wike after his sacrifices and contributions to the PDP.

Afegbua said Wike was more deserving of the slot but was treated unfairly by the party even after all he had done to keep the party together, especially in the South.

The former Edo State Information Commissioner and a known ally of Wike who also hinted that he would throw his weight behind the candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu instead of supporting his former boss.

Afegbua also said the selection of Okowa as Atiku’s running mate was something that gladdens his heart as Okowa was a weaker candidate who will not add anything to the chances of the PDP in the presidential election.

“It gladdens my heart that Atiku has picked a weaker candidate as his running mate. It provides a golden opportunity for the APC, which has a Southern candidate and Peter Obi.

“Okowa was among the governors who made the Southern declaration that the region should produce the next President but he went behind to work against it and betrayed the South because he was looking at becoming Vice president.

“Atiku has used the Vice President slot to compensate him,” he said.

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