The Rivers state governor, Mr. Nyesom Wike has dismissed rumours that governors of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) traveled to Europe to select presidential and vice presidential candidates of the party for the 2023 general elections.
He also debunked insinuations that the PDP governors, especially, Oyo State Governor, Seyi Makinde, want to usurp the function of National Working Committee (NWC ) in a bid to impose a candidate for the Osun state governorship election.
The governor, accused those behind the rumour of deliberately sowing the seeds of discord in a bid to ruin the chances of the PDP in the 2023 general elections.
Wike spoke on Friday in Port Harcourt, Wike said the PDP governors had been inundated with calls following a text message allegedly being circulated by a chieftain of the party, Chief Raymond Dokpesi, that some governors had embarked on a week-long trip to Europe to determine the presidential and vice presidential candidates of the party in 2023.
“I have always said to people in PDP, nobody should cause a division among the governors. “We are trying as much as we can to build the party back and see that in 2023 PDP takes over governance.
“But, I have some suspicions that people like Raymond Dokpesi are not really sincere to the PDP and I think, I am convinced that Raymond Dokpesi appears to be working for APC
“I don’t understand where Raymond Dokpesi gets this information, this rumour that governors travelled to Europe to decide who will be the presidential candidate and vice presidential candidate of PDP.
“I wonder why governors will travel to Europe to take such a decision.”
Wike said while he and his colleagues don’t have anything against Dokpesi campaigning for the 2019 PDP presidential candidate and former Vice President of Nigeria, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, he should be circumspect and desist from causing mayhem in the party.
“I have told Raymond Dokpesi that there is nothing wrong with you preaching for the candidature of Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, the Waziri of Adamawa, a very experienced man, an intelligent man, a strategist.
“But don’t destroy other people because of this. Because when you destroy them it will be difficult for PDP to win election in 2023”, he said.
The Rivers state governor urged Abubakar, who he described as a well-known political strategist to rein in Chief Dokpesi from spreading dangerous rumours capable to polarising stakeholders in the party.
The governor noted that in 2019, PDP governors, without the prompting of Dokpesi rallied round Alhaji Abubakar and will do so again if he picks the party’s presidential ticket.
“We supported Atiku Abubakar when he won (PDP presidential ticket), and even if he wins now, the governors will rally round him, but when you destroy the governors and bring confusion, how will it work.”
The governor advised all those who love the PDP to win the 2023 general elections to desist from spreading harmful and baseless information intended to cause strife and mistrust.
On the rumours that the Oyo governor want to usurp the functions of the NWC, Wike explained that Governor Makinde, who is the only PDP governor in the South-west geopolitical zone, deserves to be consulted as it concerns the forthcoming governorship elections in Osun and Ekiti states.
“The party should call the governor(Makinde) and say see what we are doing so that he will be carried along”, he said.
According to him, it will be politically wrong for people outside the South-west geopolitical zone to determine what happen in Osun without the contribution or better still, input of the Oyo State governor.