PDP committee settles for Wike as Atiku’s running mate
The committee set up by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and its presidential candidate, Atiku Abubukar to make recommendations on the issue of Vice presidential candidate has settled for the governor of Rivers State – Nyesom Wike, TheMail Newspaper can report.
The committee sat today at the national headquarters of the party in Abuja with the National Chairman, Iyorcha Ayu in attendance.
Membership of the committee cut across party leaders and other critical stakeholders.
In attendance at the meeting were Chairman of PDP Governors’ Forum – Aminu Tambuwal, Governor Benue – Samuel Ortom, Governor Bala Mohammed of Bauchi, National Secretary – Samuel Anyanwu, former Governor of Cross River – Liyel Imoke, Minority Whip of the senate – Philip Aduda, amongst others.
The front runners for the running mate slot are Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State, Governor Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta and Governor Udom Emmanuel of Akwa Ibom. While Wike was considered the party’s best bet of getting a clean sweep of the votes from the South South region because of his growing political influence, Okowa was said to be Atiku’s preferred because of his quiet disposition which fits the office the Vice President. Okowa had supported Atiku at the primary, directing delegates from Delta to vote for the former Vice President. Party sources say Udom had a chance of emerging as a compromise candidate if the stalemate on the Wike/Okowa jostle was not resolved.
TheMail Newspaper learnt on good authority that during the closed door meeting today, the options for running mate were presented with committee members asked to vote for their preferred candidate. Sources from national secretariat of the party who were privy to the meeting informed TheMail that Governor Wike got the nod of 16 out of 19 persons in attendance.
The committee is expected to make its recommendations to the party and Atiku.
Meanwhile, the party chairman, Ayu has said the choice of Vice Presidential candidate of the party will be announced within the next 48 hours.
(C) TheMail Newspaper