Aggrieved governors of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) known as the G5 or the Integrity Group on Thursday stormed the ancient city of Ibadan, the Oyo State capital, for the campaign flag-off for the reelection of Governor Seyi Makinde.
Makinde’s allies including Nyesom Wike of Rivers, Samuel Ortom of Benue, Okezie Ikpeazu of Abia and Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi of Enugu attended the event at the Mapo Hall in Ibadan.
The PDP Deputy National Chairman in the South-West, Taofeek Arapaja; the party’s Chairman in Oyo, Bayo Ogungbenro, among other party faithful were also in attendance.
Decked in Yoruba traditional attire, aso oke, Wike, Ortom, Ugwuanyi and Ikpeazu took turns to address the crowd of PDP supporters, persuading them to vote Makinde, whom they described as the “Youth Leader of the G5”, for second term in office.
“You all know that Seyi Makinde has done well since he came in 2019 and therefore the only way we can appreciate more and benefit more is for him to go back and complete the good work he has started,” Wike told the cheering crowd.
Wike urged the crowd to vote the PDP in the governorship election in the state, the various state House of Assembly, House of Representatives and Senate seats. “The other one, Seyi will come to you,” he said of the G5 choice of presidential candidate.
Of note, the party’s presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar; and the PDP National Chairman, Iyorchia Ayu; were conspicuously absent from the event on Thursday.
For months, the G5 has been at loggerheads with Atiku and Ayu over the chairmanship of the latter. The five dissatisfied governors want Ayu to step down for a southerner as a precondition to support Atiku’s decade-long ambition in the February 25 presidential election. But Ayu has insisted that he would only resign after his four-year constitutional term.