In what appears to be a back-hand swipe at Rivers State Governor, Barrister Nyesom Wike, the National chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Senator Iyorchia Ayu has said that Senator Ifeanyi Okowa was picked to be running mate to the party’s-presidential candidate because he is more humble, more educated and has executed more projects than all the other rivals.
And after stoking the fire, Ayu announced that he was travelling out of the country, with a not-too-familiar caveat: he informed the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) of the trip.
Many believe that if Wike plays true to type, he is likely to throw counter jabs at his party chief in the next few days.
At the Northern Christian Youth Assembly Summit in Abuja, Ayu said: “We looked around and we thought we have to give not just a vice president that will assist him (Atiku) but we did our homework to select a man who is highly educated, very humble, and who has done very well as a governor in his home state.
“Okowa is the most qualified running mate. It is on his own personal merit that he was selected by the party as the vice presidential candidate to Atiku Abubakar. I think Nigeria will be very lucky to have two such people who are committed to development who are detribalised who believe in uniting this country.”
Ayu and Wike have been known to use public occasions to throw jabs at each other since Wike lost the race for the running mate to Okowa.
Meanwhile, on Tuesday, Ayu’s spokesman, Mr. Simon Imobo-Tswam, released a statement of plans by his boss to travel out of the country.
He said: “The PDP National Chairman, Dr. Iyorchia Ayu, will leave Nigeria for Europe tomorrow (Wednesday).
“Ayu will be out of the country for about two weeks.
“While away, the Deputy Chairman (North), Amb. Iliya Damagun, will act in his place.
“Already, the National chairman has communicated the handover to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).
“He is expected back at month-end.”