Governors move to douse tension between PDP, Wike
Efforts to douse the frosty relationship between the Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike, and the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) were revved up with the visit of six PDP governors to Port Harcourt on Friday.
Governors that made the trip include governors Seyi Makinde (Oyo) Emeka Ihedioha (Imo) Aminu Tambuwal (Sokoto) Samuel Ortom (Benue) Mohammad Mattawale (Zamfara) Umaru Fintiri of Adamawa State.
A source close to Wike told The Guardian that the states’ helmsmen, who arrived the Rivers State Government House, on Friday night, would depart the state today.
Governor Tambuwal, whom Wike backed during the PDP presidential primary claimed their visit to was to commend their host for his sustained projects delivery, but sources within the PDP in the state said the visit was to douse the brewing tension within the party and ensure cohesion.
It would be recalled that Wike 11 days ago taken a swipe at the PDP over the panel it set up to investigate the emergence of Ndudi Elumelu as the Minority Leader of the House of Representatives.
The PDP leadership had initially backed Wike’s candidate, Okey Chinda, who represents Obio-Akpor Federal Constituency for that position, but a section of the party rallied opposition parties and came up with Elumelu, who subsequently emerged as the minority leader.
The failure of the party to sanction Elumelu infuriated Wike, who accused the committee of being the most corrupt in the history of the party and lauded the former Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives, Austin Opara (who was nominated to chair the panel) for withdrawing from that committee. He further warned the PDP not to toy with Rivers State.
Barely 24 hours later, Wike, who congratulated President Muhammadu Buhari on his victory at the presidential election tribunal, also accused some PDP governors of two-facedness as they often secretly visit the President at his residence at night.
Sources told The Guardian that the governors concerns have been heightened over the recent visits of the chairman of the Nigeria Governors Forum and Ekiti State governor, Dr Kayode Fayemi to Rivers State, and the glowing remarks he made about Wike.
Meanwhile, Governor Tambuwal in a statement issued by Wike’s media office in the early hours of yesterday, declared that PDP remains strongly united in friendship and brotherhood.”We are here as brothers and friends to the Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike in the spirit of brotherhood and friendship, to encourage and support him for the good governance he has given to the good people of Rivers State. The 100 days of the second term of Governor Wike is also why we are here. The spirit in Port Harcourt and Rivers State is that of celebration and thanksgiving and gratitude to God for such wonderful leadership by Governor Wike”
“We are also here to join him and the good people of Rivers State in thanking God for his leadership and to thank God for giving the state a wonderful leader like him. The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) is very strongly united,” he said.