Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State has said himself and his allies, better known as the Integrity Group or G-5 governors, have not struck a deal with any presidential candidate ahead of next year’s election.
The G5, which includes Wike, Governors Seyi Makinde (Oyo), Samuel Ortom (Benue), Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi (Enugu), and Okezie Ikpeazu (Abia) have been at loggerheads with the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) presidential candidate Atiku Abubakar in the wake of the party’s presidential primary.
Governor Wike, who lost to Atiku, believes the process was unfair and the five governors maintain that the PDP National Chairman, Dr. Iyorchia Ayu, a Northerner, must resign.
Since the crisis, there had been speculations that the group had backed a candidate for the presidential election.
But Governor Wike has waved off the reports, describing them as ‘untrue’.
“[They said] Wike had an interview with BBC and he said we have a deal with so and so. Meanwhile, no video, no audio. And some of you waste your time listening to such things,” he said, on Friday, during the flag-off of the construction of Eneka-Igbo Etche Road.
“Don’t you know that when I want to do something, I will do it? Don’t you know? Do you need to speculate? You don’t need to speculate. They said there is trouble but there is no trouble. What we have is an introduction to the trouble that is going to come.
“So, my dear people, I just want to tell you that whatever decision I will take, I will let you know. I cannot take any decision without taking advice from you,” the governor added, urging detractors to leave members of the G5.
He continued, “I just want to enjoy myself and my family,” Governor Wike said, maintaining that he is not contesting an election next year and thus should not be the subject of speculations.
He also accused Atiku of holding secret meetings with governors of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) and failing to keep to his promise of not having the PDP presidential candidate and the party’s chairman from the same region (North).