National Honour: Buhari Vindicates My Choice Of Picking Okowa Over Wike – Atiku
The presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Atiku Abubakar, has said that the National Honour of Commander of the Order of the Niger (CON), conferred on his running mate, Governor of Delta State, Ifeanyi Okowa, has vindicated his preference of the governor over other choices he had.
Naija News reports that Okowa was among four hundred and forty Nigerians conferred with prestigious awards by President Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday at the International Conference Centre (ICC) in Abuja.
Reacting to the development, Atiku in a terse statement via his social media page, congratulated the PDP governor on his national honour.
According to him, the award was another piece of evidence that he was right to pick him as his running mate amongst other choices.
Atiku’s message to Okowa read: “Today’s conferment of the National Honour on Governor Ifeanyi A. Okowa by President Muhammadu Buhari is a testimonial that I made the right decision in tapping an achiever as my Vice Presidential candidate for the 2023 election. On behalf of my family, our team and our supporters, I say congratulations.”
Naija News understands that Atiku had received knocks from party stakeholders after picking the Delta State governor as his running mate, leaving behind Rivers State Governor Nyesom Wike who emerged second behind him at the PDP’s national convention and presidential primaries months ago.
Atiku’s choice of Okowa over Wike is counted as one of the major Genesis of the yet unsolved crisis rocking the nation’s major opposition camp.
A few months before the 2023 general elections, Wike and four other governors elected on the platform of the PDP, including some party chieftains have openly shown their displeasure with the leadership of the party and activities going on in preparation for the February 2023 polls, Naija News understands.
Recently, the party chieftains boycotted the kickoff of the Atiku/Okowa presidential campaign in Uyo, Akwa Ibom State. Aside from the anger over Atiku’s choice of making Okowa his running mate, the party stakeholders are also demanding the resignation of the PDP National Chairman, Iyorchia Ayu.
The developments have since caused an internal crisis in the opposition party seeking to unseat the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC).