BY IKECHUKWU AGADA
The war of attrition in PDP seems to be getting messier as four governors within Atiku’s camp have drawn battleline with their colleagues in the splinter camp led by Governor Wike.
The Pro-Atiku’s camp governors include Godwin Obaseki of Edo State, Darius Ishaku of Taraba State, Umaru Fintiri of Adamawa State and Douye Diri of Bayelsa State.
It was gathered that the governors rejected all entreaties to join Wike camp but rather play the bridge builder role. After all efforts to convince the Wike camp proved abortive, they decided to draw battleline with them.
The grouse of the Pro-Atiku governors is that the Wike’s camp requests will do the party great damage rather than good few months to the general elections. A top PDP member who is in Atiku’s camp argued that
PDP will be headed to the slaughter house should they bow to Wike’ camp.
“He was ready to compromise his earlier position and discuss modalities including having Ayu step aside for an acting chairman from the South to take charge of the campaign. But other stakeholders of the party did not waste time in opposing the proposed arrangement,” said another source.
Wike, according to one source, refused to shift ground on his insistence that Ayu must resign during the recent meeting between him and the BoT.
A PDP NEC member said the objection of the Pro-Atiku governors to the removal of Ayu was hinged on the fears within the party that Wike’s camp would make more demands should Ayu leave.
“Beyond the issue of ego and bad timing, there are worries that Wike and his supporters may remain implacable even after succeeding with the sack of Ayu as national chairman. With the way they’ve carried on so far, some leaders of the party are insisting that it will be wrong to allow one man to hold the entire party to ransom in this manner,” the source said.
“We are telling Nigerians that we are coming to correct the lopsidedness in government. We are saying we want to offer a decisive government to Nigeria. How do we explain that we cannot manage our own affairs without being forced to accept queer conditions? How do we explain that we can be forced to abandon our own rules and constitution just because someone wants to play God?
“These are the questions some of us are asking, and as such, I am not surprised to hear that
some of our leaders are already opposing the egoistic demands of a minority who are unwilling to put the general interest of the PDP over and above their personal desires and ego.”
A few hours after his latest tirade against Ayu on Friday, Wike left Port Harcourt for Spain in company with Makinde, Ikpeazu and Ortom for what sources described as working out their next move on the PDP crisis.
It was learnt that Enugu State Governor, Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, might join the team later.
The G5 has been calling for the resignation of Ayu as their minimum condition for peace in the party and to join the Presidential campaign council of Alhaji Atiku Abubakar.
The five governors have insisted that it is unfair for the party to have the national chairman and Presidential candidate from the northern extraction ahead of the poll.
It was learned that Ayu is also not leaving anything to chance in his face-off with Wike as he is working harder at lobbying more party leaders to ensure he is not removed from office to placate the Rivers State governor and his backers.
A source said: “Ayu is not resting on his oars as he has also intensified his efforts at winning more leaders of the party to his side. Several meetings have been held with party leaders and groups.
“Last week, he met with the forum of ex-officio members of the party as part of moves to ensure he is not sacrificed in the ongoing face-off.”