Jonah Jang, a former governor of Plateau State, has accused Iyorchia Ayu, the party’s national chairman, of assisting Atiku Abubakar in ousting his rivals during the primary election, including Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State, to become the party’s nominee for president in 2023.
This was what Jang said after a gathering of PDP members who support Governor Wike on Wednesday in Port Harcourt.
He compared Ayu to a “referee” who assisted one team in scoring a goal and blew the goal-scoring whistle.
The former governor of Plateau said that Ayu and Aminu Tambuwal, the governor of Sokoto State, had a “private arrangement” by which they would undercut Governor Nyesom Wike and other candidates for the party’s presidency.
One of the front-runners in the party’s presidential primary, Tambuwal, decided at the last minute to withdraw and requested his supporters to vote for Atiku.
With Tambuwal’s assistance, Atiku was able to defeat Governor Wike and other contenders to become the party’s front-runner.
Ayu visited Tambuwal in Abuja a few hours after the primary, ostensibly to thank him for standing down for Atiku. According to Jang, this visit revealed that the two men had a private deal.
“Thank you, thank you. You are the hero of the convention,” Ayu was seen telling his host in a video clip that captured his arrival at Tabuwal’s residence.
Speaking after the meeting of the Wike-led group in Port Harcourt, Jang said, “For the National Chairman, Ayu, to go and embrace Aminu Tambuwal, calling him the hero of the convention which means there was a private arrangement that was done with Tambuwal to shortchange other contestants, including Governor Nyesom Wike.
“Here was a referee who now helped one of the sides to score a goal and then blew a whistle that a goal had been scored. This is not what we formed the PDP to do for Nigerians and therefore we unequivocally ask that Ayu has to step down.”