In order to put an end to the hostility between former vice president Atiku Abubakar and governor of Rivers State Nyesom Wike, a Chieftain of the Peoples Democratic Party and ex-presidential candidate Sam Ohuabunwa has requested the party’s national chairman, Iyorchia Ayu, to step down.
Mr Ohuabunwa made the call on Channels Television’s Politics Today. When he was chosen as Chairman last year, Mr Ayu reportedly pledged to step down if the party nominated a Northerner for president, he stressed.
As part of efforts to manipulate zoning issues within the PDP, it was anticipated that Mr Ayu would keep his word and vacate the seat for a Southerner if Abubakar emerged as the party’s presidential flagbearer.
If PDP National Chairman Iyorchia Ayu promised to step down, he should follow the path of honour. – Sam Ohuabunwa#PoliticsToday#CTVTweets pic.twitter.com/q13T8D5am2
People with knowledge of the situation claim that Wike also stipulated Mr Ayu’s resignation as a need for the success of the peace negotiations with Atiku.
In the PDP presidential primary, Wike was defeated by Atiku and rejected as a vice presidential candidate, but the latter is considered crucial to the party’s victory in the 2023 presidential election.
Mr Ayu, meanwhile, has insisted he has no plans to step down.
“I see him as a man of honour,” Ohuabunwa said on Tuesday evening, referring to Mr Ayu. “If that is what he said, he should follow the path of honour.
“Even if he didn’t say it, if he is the leader of the party who has brought us to this point, he should make the sacrifice. Do what needs to be done and make sure Nigerians are happy with PDP, and members of PDP are happy.
“If he needs to step down for that to happen, he should do so. We need to unify the party.”
Ohuabunwa bemoaned the ongoing conflict between Atiku and Wike, stressing that it was causing the PDP diversion as the election of 2023 draws nearer.
According to him, the party’s inability to resolve the dispute demonstrates a lack of conflict resolution skills.
“This party is bleeding right now,” Ohuabunwa said.