Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State has accused the National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Senator Iyorchia Ayu, of working against his emergence as the presidential candidate of the party.
Speaking at a media briefing on Friday, The Rivers governor accused Ayu of calling many presidential aspirants to withdraw for Atiku Abubakar, who eventually picked the ticket.
He mentioned some of those contacted to withdraw for Atiku as Bauchi Governor Bala Mohammed: his Sokoto counterpart Aminu Tambuwal and former Senate President Bukola Saraki.
Wike claimed that Ayu also threatened to resign as chairman if he emerged as the candidate, stating the National Chairman manipulated the process for the victory of Atiku.
Speaking further, Wike revealed that former President Goodluck Jonathan begged some members of the PDP not to leave the party in 2014.
He said Atiku, Saraki Tambuwal rebuffed Jonathan’s pleas to rescind their decision to join the APC.
Wike said the PDP’s constitution contained provisions for zoning of elective and party positions but lamented that some people were doing everything within their powers to manipulate the system.
He said: “There shall be zoning of party and elective offices. It is clear. Not ambiguous. But people will always try to manipulate the system to suit them.
“They slant stories in such a way as to deceive the public. The founding fathers know the complexity of this country. They did it in a such a way as not to have problems.
“People should not forget history. In 2013 and 2014, there was an issue of the presidential candidate. Jonathan emerged. Atiku and others worked out of the convention. Tambuwal and former Senate President all worked out.”