Rivers Governor Nyesom Wike has called on the National Working Committee (NWC) of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to allow Governors in the party to supervise the congresses and governorship primary in Anambra State.
He said winning the November governorship election in Anambra was critical to the PDP and concerted efforts must be made to ensure nobody was alienated in the processes leading to the election of the party’s flagbearer.
The Governor, according to a statement by his Special Assistant, Media, spoke while addressing PDP leaders in the southeast during a meeting in Enugu on Monday to reconcile Anambra stakeholders ahead of the November election.
He explained that he was in Enugu to commiserate with Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi and former Deputy Senate President, Dr Ike Ekeremadu, over the death of the former Commissioner for Transport, Mathias Ekweremadu.
He, however, said he was notified of the meeting by the Governor, who also urged him to be in attendance and speak to delegates at the Government House.
Wike said the November election offered the PDP a rare opportunity to retake Anambra State and consolidate the party’s grip in the southeast geopolitical zone.
The Governor said people must be willing to make sacrifices in the overall interest of the PDP.
He said: “Let us have party interest, not group interest and put everything aside. Anambra used to be a PDP state but because of wrangling and not giving in, that is what has made PDP lose Anambra. Only two states in the South East which are Enugu and Abia are PDP today. If we add Anambra, it is a good boost for us.”
He warned that if PDP failed to win Anambra state it would not work well for the party particularly in the South East.
Wike said: “It must be done transparently. Whether the Congresses or the primary itself, the governors will be in charge to come and do the election.”
He said adherence to the suggestion that PDP Governors be allowed to oversee the conduct of the congresses and primary would serve as a test case to determine whether the NWC was serious about PDP winning the Anambra election.
Wike specially charged the PDP National Organising Secretary, Col Austin Akobundu (rtd), who was present at the meeting, to ensure processes leading to the election of a PDP candidate in Anambra was done transparently to give people confidence that the party meant well for all.
He said: “You have a critical role. Luckily you’re from South East, tell them that look if we lose Anambra, there is a problem for us in the South East. And you know that APC is coming out strong to fight in Anambra State. So let us work together.”
Wike assured the delegates that PDP governors would support the party in Anambra state to win the November election saying: “All of us are ready to give Anambra that support to win this election.”
Wike appealed to persons in court to withdraw their suit in the interest of the PDP urging contending factions in Anambra State to reconcile and work in unison.
“In the name of God, everybody keeps your ego, part of the problem is ego, let us work as a team and deliver PDP,” he said.