Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike, has alleged that his party, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), violated the guidelines of the convention by allowing his Sokoto state colleague, Aminu Tambuwal, to make a speech shortly before the commencement of voting.
Recall that there was a last minute twist at the PDP presidential convention held on Saturday, May 28, 2022, when Tambuwal mounted the stage for the second time to address the delegates.
The northern presidential aspirant didn’t only use the moment to announce his withdrawal from the contest, but also asked his delegates to vote for fellow aspirant, Atiku Abubakar.
The former Vice President then went on to clinch the coveted presidential ticket with a total of 371 votes, while Wike finished second with 237 votes.
There is a widespread belief that Tambuwal’s withdrawal and endorsement of Atiku threw a spanner in Wike’s works as he had earlier been tipped to clinch the ticket.
Reacting to his loss at the primaries, the Rivers State Governor said he could have disrupted proceedings when the organisers gave Tambuwal the chance to address the convention for a second time.
He argued that it would have been right if he had announced his withdrawal from the race the first time he spoke.
Wike said, “I’ve never seen how people can violate procedure, guideline. Somebody has spoken, it’s at that point he was speaking that he can say I’m withdrawing. You don’t call him back.”
The Rivers Governor said his decision not to react was based on his love for the party.
“I just said, look, this our party must not be destroyed. I would have left where I was sitting down and say no, this convention can’t go on except you allow me to talk and I would have flatten that they say is a human being (Tambuwal), I would have flattened him.”
“When you see people, a sitting governor won election with 300 votes, which votes will he give? So it’s God’s will, let’s not bother ourselves so much.”
Meanwhile, winner of the contest, Atiku, has met with Wike in Abuja less that 48 hours after the convention.
The meeting, it was gathered, was to reconcile the two party chieftains and give the PDP a robust outing in the 2023 presidential election against the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC).