A former Senator representing Kogi West and spokesman of the Atiku Abubakar Presidential Campaign Organisation, Dino Melaye, has disclosed that the National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Iyorchia Ayu, would resign when Atiku emerges president in 2023.
Naija News reports that Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State, who has been having a running battle with Atiku, has insisted on the resignation of Ayu as a condition for peace in the opposition party.
PDP Chairman’s Removal
Speaking to Leadership, Dino Melaye accused members of the All Progressives Congress (APC) of clamoring for Ayu’s sack.
He stated that moves to force Ayu’s resignation before the 2023 presidential election is dead on arrival.
While claiming that the APC wants to cause a constitutional crisis in the PDP, Dino Melaye revealed that Ayu would not be chairman by the time Atiku emerges as president-elect.
He said, “The voluntary resignation of Ayu, if we are to go by the constitution of the party, it states that once the chairman is removed, he must be replaced by somebody from the zone, and by hierarchy and procedure, if Ayu resigns today, the deputy national chairman, north, by constitutional provisions is the one that is supposed to step in.
“And what they are clamouring for is that the north should not be chairman and north should not be the presidential candidate, but it has happened before where a northerner was the chairman and Good luck Jonathan became president, but immediately Jonathan was sworn in, then he was removed and (Dr. Okwesilieze) Nwodo was brought in to replace the northerner, and that scenario is the same thing that we should follow.
“We are not saying Ayu will be chairman by the time Atiku emerges as president-elect. The moment he becomes president-elect, and I have said before – that the governors of PDP made Ayu national chairman, and that is why Ayu was a consensus candidate.
“At the time they were making Ayu national chairman, did they think that Ayu is from Imo? Or did they think that Ayu is from Edo state? Everybody knew that Ayu is a northerner when he was made the chairman, so let us not just because of personal interest try to create problems where there is none.”
He stated there is no issue in the main opposition party, adding that the PDP campaign council would be unveiled soon.
Atiku vs Wike
Speaking further, the former lawmaker stated that the issue between Wike and Atiku is a minor disagreement “between one or two members of the party,” which is expected in a democracy.
According to him, the crisis between the Rivers governor and the PDP presidential candidate is under control, and in a matter of days, it will be over.
He described Wike as a responsible man, stressing that the governor is yet to say that he is not going to support PDP.
He recalled that Wike, during the convention, told Nigerians that he would support whoever emerged as the presidential candidate of the party.
“I can assure you that there is no cause for alarm that PDP is going to win the next general election and Atiku Abubakar is going to be the president of the Federal Republic of Nigeria come 2023,” he said.
APC A Dead Party
Senator Dino Melaye described APC as a dead party, saying that Nigerians are looking for results while APC is busy giving excuses.
He said, “You are a Nigerian, you go to the same market, and you know what life was in 2015, and you know what it is today. If you carry out comparative analysis to know what it is, in the area of insecurity, the problem was limited to Yobe and Borno states.”
He added that today no part of the country is secure to the extent that the president of the Federal Republic of Nigeria is being threatened with kidnap by bandits.
“We have never gotten to a stage that the last line of defence, which is the Brigade of Guards, is being attacked, and there is no remedy, there is no arrest or parading of anyone,” he said.
Dino Melaye said in 2015, Nigerians flew Economy (class) from here to Lagos for N18,000; today, it is N100,000.
The former lawmaker said: “I bought diesel in 2015 for N180 per liter, today it is N800. You can tell me that the Dollar in 2015 was N210 today, it is N700 to a dollar. We are at the edge, and you cannot be blaming PDP for your misfortune.”
According to him, under the PDP, rail lines were not attacked, kidnapping was not this elaborate, and under the Goodluck Jonathan administration, the total budget for defence, including the police, in 2015 was N66bn, but when Buhari came in 2015, the 2016 budget for defence rose to N99bn, to N140bn in 2017 and N240bn in 2018.