Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State has rejected fresh moves by the presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Atiku Abubakar, to resolve the lingering crisis between them.
It was gathered that the meeting held on Thursday between the duo to resolve the crisis ended in a deadlock as Wike insisted that the party’s National Chairman, Iyorchia Ayu, must be removed or resign.
Wike had reportedly told Atiku that Ayu must resign for peace moves to begin when they on Thursday at his private residence in Asokoro, Abuja.
Speaking to The PUNCH one of Wike’s close allies, former Senator Olaka Wogu said the Rivers Governor reiterated his demand to the former vice-president that there was no going back on his demand that Ayu must go, adding that Wike stood firm on his demands.
Wogu stated, “I just want to set the record straight that no matter what you have heard, the meeting ended because Wike stood firm that there was no basis for any resolution until Ayu stepped down.
“Every other thing can be discussed, whether it is 2027 or not after the needful has been done. This will put the party in a position where the national chairman can go to every state to campaign for the party. There are some states where Ayu may not be welcomed.”
Wogu dismissed reports that Atiku offered to back Wike for president in 2027, stressing that there was no such discussion at the Thursday meeting.
He said, “There is nothing like that. I told you that talks are still ongoing between them. I won’t lie to you, but I cannot disclose the content of the meeting; the idea is to find whether they can reach an agreement.
“As you know, Wike has stood his ground that Ayu must leave for a sense of fairness, equity, and for what is right. He should go. This was even compounded by the fact that Ayu himself said he would go. So, as a matter of honour, he should go.
“Before now, Atiku had said that there were constitutional challenges to his (Ayu’s) removal. So between pleasure and force, we will explore the option. That was what Atiku said in London. This is like a follow-up; they are talking.”