The presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Atiku Abubakar on Thursday has finally announced his running mate.
Atiku disclosed that the Delta State Governor, Ifeanyi Okowa is his running mate for the 2023 presidential election.
This is coming following of a series of meetings between the candidate and the hierarchy of the party on the issue.
DAILY GIST reported that the party had set up a committee to recommend some candidates to the former vice president.
The national working committee (NWC) of the PDP had on Wednesday endorsed Nyesom Wike, governor of Rivers, as Atiku’s running mate.
The NWC members voted 13-3 to endorse the report of the stakeholders’ panel which had earlier nominated Wike for the VP ticket.
Okowa got only three votes.
But despite reports on Tuesday that the committee overwhelmingly recommended Rivers State Governor Nyesom Wike, his recommendation did not sit well with many leaders of the party.
Atiku is said to be ill at ease with Wike as his running mate because he believes the governor does not like him.
The leaders, it was gathered felt that Mr Wike is not suitable for a position that places him a heartbeat away from the presidency.
A number of party chieftains raised concerns about the governor’s temperament, his perceived dictatorial tendencies and his propensity for picking fights even with key allies.
Some also argued that Mr Okowa possessed a better intellectual bent and would bring better value to governance at the federal level if the ticket is eventually elected by Nigerians.
Atiku apparently shared their concerns and turned his attention to Mr Okowa who it was reported to have been his initial favourite for the position.
Mr Okowa supported Atiku in the primary where Mr Wike was his closest challenger.
Political parties have until Friday (tomorrow) to submit lists of their candidates for the 2023 elections to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).