Nyesom Wike, Rivers State governor, has accused Iyorchia Ayu, national chairman of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) of corruption, alleging that he collected N1bn from one of the party’s presidential aspirants in the lead up to the primary election.
The Rivers governor levelled the allegation on Friday, during a media chat anchored by Gbenga Aruleba (AIT), Seun Okinbaloye (Channels), Babajide Kolade-Otitoju (TVC)
Wike said, “Ayu is corrupt. Quote me. I am a lawyer and I am the governor of Rivers State. Ayu collected N1 billion in Lagos.
“He told one of the PDP presidential aspirants before the primary that the governors were not ready to fund the party.
Continuing, he said, “I know how the money was arranged and those involved in packaging the money. He collected the N1 billion. Let him come out to tell Nigerians it is not true and I will reveal more.
“He was calling aspirants to withdraw for Atiku. I was there, Saraki and others were there.
“He manipulated the delegates. There was nothing Ayu did not do to ensure Wike didn’t emerge.
“A whole national chairman threatened some of the presidential aspirants at that time that if Wike wins, he was going to resign.”
The Rivers State governor also noted that he was aware of the moves by Ifeanyi Okowa, Delta State governor, to become the vice presidential candidate of the PDP.
One of the journalists interviewing him, Gbenga Aruleba, pointed out that perhaps, he (Wike) had not been observing the patterns as Okowa was the only South South governor who didn’t buy a nomination form to vie for the presidency or a senatorial seat and that might have been a pointer to his undeclared ambition.
Wike responded, “That he (Atiku) was going to run with Okowa. That Okowa supported him. We were all aware. It is not that we didn’t see.
‘Take for instance the United States of America, (Joe) Biden ran and the current vice president of America, Kamala Harris, gave Biden serious problem.
“When they wanted to pick the Vice President, Biden said this woman gave me serious problem, I cannot pick this woman, but those in Biden’s camp, who meant well for him told him,
‘‘If you want to win this election, you must pick Kamala Harris.’ And look at the support (for Biden) today.
“The problem with some of our leaders is that there are so many rent-seekers around them. They (rent-seekers) have not been in power for years. So they are all looking for how to bounce back. They are people who have no value to add.”
Wike equally revealed that Bola Tinubu, the presidential candidate of the All Progressive Congress (APC), offered him a senatorial ticket of the party after the PDP presidential primary, but he turned down the offer.
The Rivers governor said he rejected the ticket offer from the APC presidential candidate due to his loyalty to the opposition party and commitment to ensuring that PDP returns to power during the 2023 election in the country.
According to him, he contested the presidential primaries because he wanted to be the candidate and that is why he didn’t buy a senatorial form.
‘’I didn’t contest so I can become a vice presidential candidate, I am not like others who were not serious and bought senatorial form alongside presidential form and that’s why when Tinubu offered me senate slot, I didn’t go for it