Rivers State Governor Nyesom Wike on Tuesday appeared to soften his tone amid the crisis within the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
Speaking after meeting with members of the party’s Board of Trustees at the Government House in Port Harcourt, Wike said he was committed to achieving peace within the PDP.
“The most important thing is to have peace,” Wike said. “The house is united. I am hopeful we will resolve the issues, because I am alive.
“Only those who are alive are hopeful. We have said repeatedly that we will not leave the party. We believe the internal issues will be resolved.”
Acting Chairman of the BoT, Adolphus Wabara, also hinted that progress had been made at the talks.
“We have not concluded,” Wabara said. “Making peace is difficult. But we have heard from his side. The family remains one. We shall achieve peace very soon.”
Wike and his allies had on September 20 announced their withdrawal from the presidential campaign council of Atiku Abubakar.
They were also absent from the inauguration of Atiku’s campaign council on September 28, 2022 as they argued that northerners should not occupy the two top positions of the party.
For months, Wike and his allies have called for the resignation of PDP National Chairman, Iyorchia Ayu, after Atiku defeaed the Rivers State governor at the PDP primary in May and emerged the presidential candidate of the party.
Wike and his loyalists have argued that northerners cannot hold the two most important posts in the main opposition party.
Ayu had in October 2021 allegedly said he would vacate the chairmanship seat if the region produces the PDP presidential candidate.
However, the chairman said he won’t resign and will be in office till the end of his four-year tenure.
Earlier, then-PDP Board of Trustees Chairman, Walid Jibrin, and a northerner from Nasarawa State agreed that it is unfair for the party to have its presidential candidate and national chairman from the same region.
Jibrin had weeks back resigned amid the crisis and PDP BoT had subsequently announced Wabara as acting BoT chairman of the party but Wike’s camp have maintained that Ayu must go for peace to reign in the party.