From Ndubuisi Orji, Abuja
Former Secretary to Government of the Federation (SGF), Anyim Pius Anyim, has said he did not oppose the nomination of former Anambra State governor, Peter Obi, as Peoples Democratic Party ( PDP) vice presidential candidate in 2019.
Anyim, in a statement, he personally, on Thursday, faulted by the Rivers State governor, Nyesom Wike, that he was amongst South East leaders that kicked against Obi’s choice as Atiku Abubakar’s running mate in 2019.
The former SGF explained that he never attended any of the meeting held in the aftermath of the protestation by some South East PDP leaders over Obi’s nomination.
The statement read : “My attention has been drawn to a statement by Gov. Wike during his media chat of 22nd of March, 2023. In a response to a claim that he came after Gov. Peter Obi during the 2023 presidential election, Gov. Wike recounted how he made it possible for Gov. Peter Obi to be PDP Vice Presidential Candidate in 2019 and that Gov. Peter Obi was not appreciative.
In Gov. Wike’s words ‘I was fought by people like Ike Ekweremadu, Gov. Dave Umahi and Pius Anyim.’
“I would have ignored this misspeak by Gov. Wike, hoping that the Pius Anyim referred to is not myself. But reading it on Page 26 of Daily Sun of today 23 March 2023, confirms to me that I may be the one referred to, hence the need to put the records straight.
“It is my wish for Gov. Wike to refresh his memory, re-collect and re-confirm the following: That the PDP presidential primaries of 2019 held in Port-Harcourt and I did not attend.
That after Gov. Peter Obi’s nomination as running mate raised some dust in the South East, PDP Governors and Party leaders from the South East met on the matter in Sen. Ekweremadu’s home in Enugu. I was not at that meeting.
Thereafter, the Presidential Candidate, H/E Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, held a town hall meeting with PDP leaders from the South East at Nike Lake hotel Enugu. I did not also attend that meeting.
“I want to state clearly, for Gov. Wike’s recollection, that I did not and never share any view with him on any candidate in 2019; neither his own candidate, who then was Gov. Aminu Tambuwal nor H/E Alhaji Atiku Abubakar who won the Primaries, talkless of Gov. Peter Obi. I did not know how Gov. Peter Obi emerged as PDP Vice Presidential Candidate and I never cared to ask but maintained a stand that the reaction that followed his nomination would also have happened to any other person from the South East.
Gov. Wike may need to confirm from Gov. Peter that from the beginning to the end of 2019 elections, he enjoyed my encouragement and goodwill.”