The presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Atiku Abubakar has said that he chose Governor Ifeanyi Okowa as his vice presidential candidate for the 2023 election over Governor Nyesom Wike because of his desire to unite Nigeria.
Atiku said this on the Arise TV morning show broadcast on Friday.
Atiku said that it is the prerogative of the candidate to pick his running mate; one that he believes he can work with amicably and also deliver the policies of the party and also try to unify the country.
“If you can go through history. I was given a ticket in 2007, I picked an Igbo. I was given a ticket in 2019, I picked an Igbo. In 2022, I was given it and I picked an Igbo man again. This is just to show you my desire to unify the country.”
He added that “Governor Wike is a brilliant politician. He is courageous; he is tenacious. I believe he has a future in the political evolution of this country.”
Atiku said that his choice of Okowa was not a rejection of Governor Wike.
He said the committee set up by the party at his instance nominated three names and requested him to exercise his prerogative of choice and he went for an Igbo man in the person of Governor Ifeanyi Okowa.
“So it is not a question of rejection. Certainly not. I think it is too harsh a word to say that we rejected the governor. We can certainly not say that,’’ the PDP presidential candidate stated.