The confusion thickens over the suit allegedly filed by Nyesom Wike, the governor of Rivers State, seeking the disqualification of Atiku Abubakar as the presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP.
While Governor Wike was listed as second plaintiff in the suit filed before the Federal High Court, Abuja, the Rivers Governor on Friday, August 12, 2022 distanced himself from the lawsuit and accused Atiku’s camp of filing the suit and joining him as co-litigant in a bid to “spoil my name”.
The first plaintiff, Newgent Ekamon, was reported to have deposed to an affidavit claiming to be a member of the PDP and attesting that Governor Wike won the party’s presidential primary held May 28, 2022.
“I want to state categorically that I didn’t go to court. I just want to say it for Nigerians to know. I have kept quiet. I am busy with delivering the dividends of democracy,” But Governor Wike, while commissioning a project on Friday, said
“If they lose the election, nobody should call my name. I have told the candidate. If I wanted to go to court, I would have gone to court within two weeks.
“It is the candidate’s group that are doing all these things. Let the world hear. They are the ones plotting all these things, thinking they will spoil my name. We are supposed to be talking about winning election.”
Investigations into the identity of Ekamon revealed that the first plaintiff was once a member of an Atiku Support Group.
News accounts reveal that after Atiku lost PDP’s 2011 presidential ticket, Ekamon and other Atiku groups in the lead up to the 2015 presidential election declared support for former President Goodluck Jonathan.
But after Jonathan lost the 2015 election, Ekamon switched his support to President Muhammadu Buhari and canvassed support for the president’s re-election in 2019.
Meanwhile, Ekamon’s membership of the PDP has been denied by Iyorchia Ayu, the national chairman of the PDP.
Ayu, while speaking at PDP’s commemoration of the International Youths Day in Abuja on Friday, August 12, 2022 accused the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) of sponsoring the suit filed against Atiku.
“He (Wike) never took the party to court. It’s APC that puts the case. The first man on that case is a coordinator for the presidential candidate of the APC.
“We know very well that they don’t believe they can win any election. They are trying to divide you. Don’t let any APC manipulation divide you. They are the one sponsoring stories of crisis in the PDP.
“There is no crisis in PDP. PDP has no crisis. It’s a united political party. Anybody who thinks he can come and do crisis, they should wait for us next year February, we will show them that they are the ones who have a crisis.
“So, I want to make it clear because people will start saying that Wike took the party to court. Wike is a strong party man and I’m happy he came out immediately and denied that he never took the party to court.
“And very soon, it will be revealed that the coordinator of the presidential candidate of the APC was the one that put Wike’s name. And that is a criminal thing,” Ayu stated.