The build-up to Nigeria’s 2023 presidential election is already taking an unusually exciting form by the growing agitation for a Nigerian president of Igbo extraction.
The Ebonyi State Governor David Umahi had told ARISE News that the People’s Democratic Party – PDP – had been unfair and unjust to the people of the Southeast in return for years of loyalty and that his departure was a protest against marginalization, after insisting that moves by the PDP show the party wasn’t willing to zone the 2023 presidency to the southeast.
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His Rivers State counterpart, Nyesom Wike holds a contrary view and accused Umahi of working for the APC even before he decamped.
“That is what we have told him, gentleman be calm, let’s watch what the ruling party is doing, we are the opposition party and not a ruling party, we must be very careful,” Wike said when he appeared on ARISE News.
He said “that’s why we say he has been working for the APC, he wants us to take a decision that will jeopardize our interest tomorrow when we don’t know where the ruling party is heading to, so we must be very careful. So the issue of when the PDP will take a decision to say where it’s going to is neither here nor there.
“Politics is strategy, you watch what’s going on. You cannot come and unveil yourself too early, so it is very wrong for Umahi to say if you don’t zone it now I will leave.
“He wants PDP to say let’s zone it now so that he doesn’t leave, nobody takes that rubbish, that’s complete balderdash, nobody will take it.
“You don’t threaten people to say if it’s not zoned now, I will leave meanwhile where you are going to have they zoned it to you?”
Governor Wike also said he will support any candidate from any of the southern regions should the party zone the presidential ticket to the south.
“If the presidency – looking at how we are – is zoned to the south and they say they want southeast, I will support the southeast, if they say it’s zoned to the south lets go southwest, I will support southwest, and if it’s zoned to the south and within the south-south meeting they say they want it then that’s another issue, but for you to say when the party has not even met and you begin to consider running an election, it is not done that way,” he said.
By Abel Ejikeme