Things keep getting worse for presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, as reconciliatory efforts by the party, to settle discord between the party’s candidate and Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State, suffers setback.
According to a report by The Nation, Wike has rejected the call for him to have one-on-one meeting with Atiku following a call by the Chairman of the PDP Board of Trustees (BoT), Senator Walid Jibrin, requesting that Atiku leads a reconciliation team to Wike.
Also, a BoT member of the party, Waziri Adamu, yesterday suggested that Wike should be appointed as Director-General of the Atiku Abubakar Campaign Organisation, but Wike seems disinterested.
A source said, “There is no likelihood of Wike having one-on-one private discussion with Atiku. Shortly after the primary, the governor had a side meeting with Atiku in Abuja and nothing was adhered to.
“He was shocked that Atiku has not told Nigerians what transpired between him and Wike after the primary and how he arrived at Governor Ifeanyi Okowa as a running mate.
“Since there was no full disclosure, Wike has directed that fresh talks with Atiku should be with his strategy team members, who will come up with an advisory for him.”
It was learnt that members of Wike’s strategy team include Governors Seyi Makinde of Oyo State, Governor Samuel Ortom of Benue, ex-governors Hassan Dankwambo of Gombe State, Ayodele Fayose of Ekiti State and Donald Duke of Cross River State, among others.
The source said that concerning what transpired between Atiku and Wike, “You can also crosscheck what I will tell you from the camp of the ex-VP. Following the euphoria of winning the primary, Atiku visited Wike to seek his support.
“He promised to make him a vice presidential candidate. Wike said he does not want the office, but that Atiku should consider ex-Governor Donald Duke. Atiku and his supporters prevailed on Wike to be his running mate.
“There was much pressure on Wike to agree to the offer. A 17-man committee was also set up by the leadership of the party and 14 of the 17 members recommended Wike as Atiku’s running mate.
“The party leadership later raised a kangaroo committee (with Ayu as a member), which claimed that the party can only recommend three candidates to Atiku to pick. And it was obvious to Wike and his team that there was a predetermined candidate.
“You can see the lines of insincerity and lack of faith in talks. This explains why Wike shut his doors against Atiku.”
Source: National Pivot