Atiku Abubakar, the presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), has chosen Delta State Governor Ifeanyi Okowa as his running mate after weeks of debate.
The announcement was made at 12 p.m., and the nominee will be screened by a committee that has already been appointed to do so.
This comes after a series of talks between the candidate and the party’s hierarchy on the subject over the course of several nights.
Atiku’s ultimate decision as of Thursday morning is Ifeanyi Okowa.
“Mr Okowa would be the nominee to be announced this morning, barring any last-minute changes of plans,” a trustworthy campaign insider stated. “But, as you know, in politics, even a minute is a long time,” he adds.
The Atiku Media Office’s Paul Ibe declined to comment on the identity of the vice-presidential nominee.
Despite reports that the committee unanimously recommended Rivers State Governor Nyesom Wike on Tuesday, his endorsement did not sit well with many party officials.
Mr Wike is not appropriate for a post that puts him a heartbeat away from the president, according to the leaders.
A number of party leaders expressed reservations about the governor’s temperament, his alleged dictatorial tendencies, and his proclivity for creating disputes with crucial friends.
Some further claimed that if Mr Okowa’s ticket is eventually voted by Nigerians, he has a stronger intellectual bent and would offer more value to federal governance.
Atiku is said to have expressed their concerns and has now shifted his attention to Mr Okowa, who is said to be his first choice for the role.
Mr. Okowa backed Atiku in the primaries, where Mr. Wike was his main rival.
Mr Okowa will come before a screening committee of the party after his public presentation on Thursday morning.
Political parties have till Friday (tomorrow) to submit candidate names to the Independent National Electoral Commission for the 2023 elections (INEC).
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