South-East Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) governors have distanced themselves from the nomination of a former governor of Anambra State, Peter Obi, as the running mate of the party’s presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar.
The governors, who made this known after a meeting with other PDP leaders in the region in Enugu on Saturday, said they were not consulted before the party and the former Vice President took the decision to pick Obi.
The three PDP governors in the zone which include Governors Dave Umahi (Ebonyi) Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi (Enugu) and Okezie Ikpeazu (Abia) attended the meeting, alongside Deputy Senate President Ike Ekweremadu, some other National Assembly members and party leaders in the zone.
Addressing journalists after the meeting, the PDP National Vice President, South-East, Austin Umahi, a brother of the Ebonyi State governor, explained that the meeting considered several matters, particularly the ‘burning issue’ of Obi’s selection as Atiku’s running mate.
Umahi said the leaders of the PDP in the South-East only learnt of the development on social media, despite the fact that the position was allocated to the zone by the party.
Although he stressed that they were not rejecting Obi’s selection, Umahi noted that Atiku should consult the party leaders in the zone.
He said, “We want to use this opportunity to congratulate our candidate, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, and we are pleased because the finger of God is on him — we believe he will become the President in 2019.
“Our leaders came together to appreciate the party for the recognition given to the South-East and keeping to their promise to give the Vice President slot to the South-East.
“However, the leaders said they only saw it on social media. Our candidate (Atiku) is travelling tonight (Saturday night). When he returns, he will discuss with the leadership of the South-East.”