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Saturday, February 4, 2023

2023: Wike, Ortom snub Atiku at Makurdi airport as PDP crisis lingers

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) crisis is far from coming to an end as Governors Samuel Ortom and Nyesom Wike shunned the party’s presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar at Makurdi Airport in Benue state.

Atiku is scheduled to hold his presidential campaign rally in Nasarawa on Monday but flew to Benue because he could not secure a landing permit in Nasarawa.

No less than 20 minutes later, Governor Ortom arrived at the airport and many had hoped he was there to welcome the presidential candidate of the PDP.

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However, in less than 5 minutes, Atiku’s running mate, Ifeanyi Okowa, landed at the Airport and greeted Governor Ortom.

The Benue governor was heard asking Okowa: “So, you people will come to my state without telling me?”

A moment later, Ortom swiftly moved towards a landing jet to receive the person on board, the person turned out to be Governor Wike of Rivers as against people’s expectation.

The 2 governors hugged and exchanged pleasantries. Without wasting much time, they get into their vehicle and zoomed off.

About 20 minutes later, Atiku, alongside the PDP national chairman, Iyorchia Ayu, and other members of the presidential campaign council, arrived at Makurdi Airport.

The former vice president was only received by Governor Okowa and members of the PDP. The absence of Wike and Ortom is a strong indication that the rift within the party is yet to be over.

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The development came barely 24 hours that Atiku said he had met with Wike in resolving the rift without telling a clear way forward.

Speaking on Sunday at the People’s Town Hall meeting organised by Channels TV, Atiku said: “I have met Wike two times in Port Harcourt, two times in Abuja, one time in London, personally.”

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