Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike, has said that the former President Olusegun Obasanjo’s endorsement of Labour Party’s presidential candidate, Peter Obi, in the 2023 election speaks volumes.
The governor stated this during the flag off of a road project in Emouha Local Government Area of the state, on Monday.
Wike said that a bad product is always difficult to sell, adding that the former president ought to have recommended the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar, to Nigerians having worked with him, but Obasanjo choose to endorse another presidential candidate.
Wike insisted that if Obasanjo refused to recommend Atiku, then something must be fundamentally wrong. He opined that PDP flagbearer should be more concerned about that loss of confidence from his former boss and the presidential election.
He also took a swipe at those accusing him and Benue State Governor, Samuel Ortom, of frustrating the micro-zoning of the PDP presidential ticket to the South East.
Wike said he had always believed in and supported concerted efforts towards ensuring that the presidency was zoned to the South.
“I was one of those who led the campaign that the party’s chairmanship should go to the North because I believed the presidency should go to the South. I attended meetings of southern governors of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and other parties from Delta to Lagos to Enugu States, where we agreed that presidency should come to the South,” he said.
The governor stated that while southern cross-party consultations were going on, there were people in the PDP who were bent on frustrating the eventual zoning of the party’s presidential ticket to the South. Such people, he maintained, cannot now turn around to cast the blame on him and Ortom to hide their scheme, thinking they could deceive Nigerians.
“I woke up this morning and read where they said, how Wike and Ortom frustrated PDP’s micro-zoning of the presidential ticket to South East. That was what the PDP presidential candidate, Atiku, said.
“I keep on saying, they will be contradicting themselves, telling lies up and down, thinking that Nigerians don’t know. How can they say that I influenced Ortom, told him to allow and throw the ticket open.
“Nigerians know those who are opposed to the zoning of the party’s chairmanship first. And when the zoning committee was set up, this time, Atiku had gone to buy form to frustrate the recommendation of the zoning committee. So that when they have bought form, they could say, oh, there is no need for zoning, will you tell people to withdraw?” he said.
According to the governor, “it is noteworthy that their gimmick is now hunting them because they were unfair to Nigerians.”
“Yes, you don’t like Ortom, no problem. I know my own, you don’t like me, no problem. But I, my state gave you the highest support in 2019, both with logistics and by votes. You can’t deceive every Nigerian again. What I have stood for are equity, fairness and justice.
“So, saying that I and Ortom frustrated PDP micro-zoning to South East is neither here nor there. They know that they don’t want the presidency to come to the South,” he added.