Rivers State governor Nyesom Wike has criticized the move by his party to appoint an acting national chairman.
According to him, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) appointing an acting chairman after Senator Iyorchia Ayu stepped aside was irrelevant.
Wike also berated Ayu over the party’s poor showing in the 2023 presidential election.
Wike, who stated this during a media chat with selected journalists in Port Harcourt yesterday, said Ayu had no political clout.
The PDP appointed Iliya Umar Damagum from Yobe State as acting chairman after the court barred Ayu from parading himself as the party’s chairman.
The governor said, “So, you can see that he (Ayu) has nothing to offer to the party. We won here which means we have something to offer to the party. Ayu has nothing to offer to the party.”
He dismissed the appointment of an acting national chairman for the PDP, saying the move was inconsequential.
Wike however expressed relief that Ayu had not stepped down from his post before the election.
The governor said: “We are happy that Ayu did not go that time because if he had gone, they would have been saying that it was because he left that is why we lost (the presidential election).”
Also yesterday, Wike laughed off the quest of Senator Dino Melaye to emerge the next governor of Kogi State, saying the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) chieftain does not have what it takes to vie for such a position.
Wike who said this while in a media chat with selected broadcast media stations in Port Harcourt yesterday said that he would not be surprised if the PDP national leadership is rooting for Melaye, “because it’s time to compensate one of his attack dogs.”
“When you give Dino that ticket, you know, he won’t win in Kogi State, you’re just compensating him for a job well done for being your ‘attack dog’ abusing those who disagreed with national leadership of PDP,” Wike said.
The governor pointed out that it will take a lot to defeat an incumbent governor or president and the ruling party.
“Why would Kogi people say they would vote for a candidate like Dino? Are we joking? Is it that the incumbent Governor did not do well, or his party is in disarray?”
Wike said defeating an incumbent government takes a lot of strategy like capitalizing on nonperformance and picking an acceptable candidate by the stakeholders of the party in the state.
He said it should not be a compensation to somebody because he is the favourite of the national leadership of PDP.
“Dino does not have what it takes [to be a governor] for crying out loud. He knows me very well. He does not have what it takes to be a governor,” he insisted.
He added that PDP is doomed to lose the election if it gives the governorship ticket to the former Kogi West senator.
Wike added that he won’t campaign for the PDP if the party gives its governorship ticket to Dino Melaye.
He also accused the party’s leadership of trying to “manipulate” the process in favour of Dino.
“Why are you trying to manipulate this in favour of one aspirant?” he queried.
Governor Wike said that he would be shocked if Dino wins the election as governor.
He warned PDP not to cry of rigging when they lose because they are confronting an incumbent with a weak candidate.
“Giving PDP governorship ticket in Kogi State to Dino Melaye is like planning to fail because he doesn’t have what it takes to become governor of Kogi State.
“Tomorrow, you begin to cry that you were rigged out. But you’re already rigging yourself out by changing the delegates list to favour someone who cannot win election. It’s not about going to act movie on television and social media,” he said.
Wike recalled that the last time Dino wanted to contest that election, that it was Senator Bukola Saraki that brought Dino to meet him.
He added that the next time he saw Melaye in his house in Port Harcourt was when Atiku Abubakar came back from Dubai and visited him.
“Dino was part of his delegation to my house. At that point I called him aside and asked him if he had abandoned Saraki and joined Atiku, if I tell you what Dino said you will be shocked,” he said.
He alleged that Dino only knows how to abuse people and act drama to get favour.