Presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Atiku Abubakar has said that he picked the governor of Delta State as running mate for the 2023 election because he can deliver.
Atiku, in an interview on Arise TV today, July 22, insisted that he should be given the benefit of doubt for his choice of a running mate, stressing: “I chose who I feel can deliver among the nominees that were presented to me.
“I didn’t reject Wike. I picked who can deliver. Wike is brilliant and tenacious. “Going by history, I picked an Igbo as running mate in 2007 and in 2019. I still picked an Igbo as running mate for 2023.
“The committee that presented the three nominees was chaired by the Governor of Benue State, Samuel Ortom. They recommended three people, so I picked one. People should be fair to me and state the facts.”
Some governors in the PDP, including Benue State Governor Samuel Ortom, have expressed their displeasure over Atiku’s decision to pick Delta State Governor Ifeanyi Okowa, not Rivers State Governor Nyesom Wike as running mate.
However, Atiku said that the party is discussing with the Rivers governor who wields a lot of power in the party to resolve the crisis his choice has generated.
“We are reaching out to Wike and we are talking with him and I believe very soon we will find a reconciliation. In fact, very soon, because we are talking to him.
“We are talking to his governor colleagues. I am very optimistic we are going to resolve our internal crisis and move on.”