From Charity Nwakaudu, Abuja
People’s Democratic Party (PDP) presidential candidate Alhaji Atiku Abubakar has been warned against any plans to drop Governor Ifeanyi Okowa as his running mate.
There is speculation that Atiku is facing pressure from governors to drop Okowa and replace him with his counterpart from Rivers State, Nyesom Wike.
Wike loyalists are also said to be making the same demand as the only way to make room for peace in the party.
In a statement made available to reporters on Tuesday by the Ohanaeze Ndigbo Youth Council Worldwide (OYC), Atiku was warned not to give up on Okowa.
The statement signed by OYC National President Mazi Okwu Nnabuike and Secretary Obinna Achionye said any attempt to replace Okowa would backfire.
The Igbo umbrella organization said the South East would not agree to completely lose out in the scheme of things, having lost the opportunity to produce the presidential candidate of the PDP or the All Progressives Congress (APC).
“Needless to repeat that we expected the PDP and APC to zone their presidential tickets to the South East, but that did not happen.
“Although this has been overtaken by events, the only consolation we have is the choice of Governor Ifeanyi Okowa as Alhaji Atiku Abubakar’s running mate, considering Okowa to be a true Igbo son.
“Having said that, how could anyone wake up and think about replacing Okowa with Wike?” As much as we know that Atiku reserves the right to choose whoever he wants as his running mate, we have the right to vote however we wish.
“And that desire is clear – that the PDP would not get a single vote from Igbo land if they line up Wike because he is a man who disowned Ndigbo. He said he was not the one of us and that it was time for revenge, we don’t know him either. If the PDP made the mistake of associating him with Atiku, the PDP would be outright rejected in the presidential election” , warned the young Ohanaeze.
The OYC added that “with the new electoral law, those who have made themselves emperors are going to be dishonored in elections. The time for fake bogus results is over, so no one should be fooled.