The alleged plan by some leaders of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to influence the appointment of Governor Aminu Tambuwal of Sokoto State as the Director-General of the PDP Presidential Campaign Organisation has caused tension in the party.
Those against such plans believe that appointing Tambuwal as DG will be disastrous to the main opposition party following current outcries by southerners who are already complaining about the north’s grip on the party’s chairmanship, BoT chairmanship, presidential candidate, and positions of chief spokespersons for the campaign council.
The name of Governor Seyi Makinde of Oyo State has been mentioned but his re-election may hamper his commitment to the presidential campaign as he may find it difficult to combine both.
However, some PDP stalwarts would prefer the appointment of Governor Nyesom Wike as the Presidential Campaign Council DG to appease the Rivers Governor and restore peace to the party.
While some PDP chieftains say Tambuwal’s appointment may backfire, those against Wike’s appointment cited what they called the party’s experience with him during the 2019 presidential campaign.
A source told The Nation: “We have a feeling that Atiku is overindulging Tambuwal when it is obvious that votes from Sokoto State cannot make him President of Nigeria. The same man is aspiring to be the President of the Senate in 2023.
“Some leaders have asked Atiku to look at Makinde or Wike or any second-term governor from Wike’s camp. We think that Makinde, who is a first-term governor, cannot cope with the rigors of two campaigns in 2023. We may end up losing Oyo State.”
Another source, who was a member of the campaign committee, said: “Contrary to what Wike was saying, there was more to his involvement in financing the party’s campaign in 2019. I am shocked our leaders are keeping quiet.
“It was true that he assisted financially during the campaign through a former President of the Senate. But instead of allowing PDP National Secretariat to handle his assistance, Wike insisted on nominating a barrister to oversee the disbursement of funds.
“The National Financial Secretary and Treasurer never had access to what he gave. There was no direct cash given to the party or Atiku for the 2019 polls.
“Our former National Chairman, Prince Uche Secondus, is alive. He should speak out about his experience. Wike is a smart and intelligent politician who knows how to cut party officers to size, especially when funds are involved.”
Peace And Reconciliation
Meanwhile, Atiku Abubakar and Wike, who had met on Thursday to iron out their differences, agreed to nominate separate teams to meet to settle the opposition party’s crisis.
It was gathered that while Atiku asked Wike to submit his list on the spot, the governor told the former vice-president that he will want to consult his strategists before unveiling his nominees for peace and reconciliation talks.
“Wike is still consulting with his strategists on the way forward for the party,” a source said.