Notable chieftains of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) including Governor Ademola Adeleke on Thursday shunned Governor Seyi Makinde, who launched his campaign for a second term of office in Ibadan, the capital of Oyo.
The PDP leaders absent from the event are believed to be the loyalists of presidential candidate Atiku Abubakar. These include the governorship candidates of the party in Lagos and Ogun States Olajide Adediran, and Ladi Adebutu respectively.
The background to the development has to do with Makinde and four other governors of the PDP withdrawing their support for Atiku.
The others are Governors Nyesom Wike, Okezie Ikpeazu, Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, and Samuel Ortom.
The Group of Five governors are insisting the party’s national chairman Iyorchia Ayu resign his position.
This demand they hinge on Ayu being a northerner as Atiku, a development they say goes contrary to the party’s constitution on distribution of offices/positions between the south and the north.
The PDP members at the campaign launch rejected Governor Wike’s advice to them to vote for the presidential candidate recommended only by Governor Makinde. Wike’s comment was immediately greeted with loud chants of Atiku’s name.
TheCornet had reported the Oyo chapter of the PDP declaring its support for Atiku, who they said assisted the party financially during previous electioneering. They had promised to pay Atiku back for his generosity, despite Governor Makinde’s opposition.