Atiku, Wike, Ortom, Makinde, Others Kick Start Plan B Despite Peace Talks Gathering Steam
The aggrieved governors of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), known as the G-5, have begun plans to actualize their plan B despite giving signals of their readiness to resolve the rift with the party’s presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar.
Speaking to newsmen during a visit to Governor Bala Mohammed of Bauchi State, Wike had said: “I have said it several times that we are ready for reconciliation; we have never closed the door for reconciliation. All we are asking for is equity, fairness, and justice, and that is the hallmark PDP stands for.
“All we are saying, let the right things be done. When the right thing is done, the country would see that the crisis in the party is over.”
On his part, Atiku’s spokesperson, Paul Ibe quoted the PDP presidential candidate as welcoming moves to resolve all outstanding issues.
Ibe said: “Atiku Abubakar also expresses his commitment to a negotiation that will resolve the crisis of confidence and pave the way for a much stronger and united PDP.
“The former Vice President of Nigeria notes that never at any time of the differences that have ensured have the doors been shut to Governor Wike and his group.”
According to reports that the Wike group, made up of Governors Seyi Makinde, Okezie Ikpeazu, Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, and Samuel Ortom of Oyo, Abia, Enugu, and Benue States respectively, are working on alternative plans should peace talks collapse irretrievably.
Wike-led G5 Governors Plan
As part of the measures to ensure they were not caught napping, some members of the Wike-led G5 Governors are recruiting enforcers under various guises.
A source close to the G5 Governors told Vanguard, said, “In pursuit of peace, you also prepare for war.
“We laugh when people with little knowledge of politics claim that because some of the governors are either contesting for office or are interested in installing their successors, the presidential candidate can do without them. A lot of these people are poor students of history. Take the results of the 2019 election in Kano for example.
“During the presidential election, INEC records show that President Muhammadu Buhari, of the All Progressives Congress, scored 1,464,768 (78.9 percent) of the total votes cast to beat the Peoples Democratic Party presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar, who polled 391,593 (21.1 percent).
“A week later, during the governorship election, based on the results collated at the state collation centre, the PDP candidate polled 1,014,353 from 43 out of the 44 local government areas against the incumbent APC governor’s 987,819 votes.
“It took the cancellation of results in areas where PDP won to force a re-run. There were states where the President lost but governors won, the elections will not be held on the same day remember? Anything can happen.”
Atiku Abubakar’s Camp
Atiku’s camp is also making plans of its own, with reports claiming that they have intensified engagements with party leaders sympathetic to their cause in Rivers, Oyo, Benue, Abia, and Enugu states if peace talks with the G-5 governors crumble.
A source familiar with the development said: “We are open to the latest peace moves because it will be better for us for everyone to be on board.
“It’s cheaper and less messy but we also have people who have been working for the party and the ticket on the ground, we will continue engaging. The election is not going to be held tomorrow and like we always say, 24 hours is a long time in politics.”
When contacted, a spokesman for the Atiku/Okowa Campaign, Kola Ologbondiyan, said, “We will soon put our enemies to shame on this matter. We know those who are afraid of PDP’s imminent electoral victory would want the issues we are about to resolve to continue but I assure Nigerians that sooner than later, these outstanding issues will be resolved and Nigeria will be the better for it.”