Despite insinuations that Rivers Governor Nyesom Wike has been chosen as Atiku’s running mate for 2023 Presidential election, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has set up a committee to screen its vice-presidential candidate for the 2023 general elections.
Members of the Vice Presidential Candidate Screening Committee were nominated by the PDP National Working Committee (NWC), said the party’s spokesman, Debo Ologunagba.
Ologunagba, who disclosed this in a statement on Tuesday, explained that the NWC constituted the committee in line with the electoral guidelines of the main opposition party.
He added that the screening exercise would hold by 10 am on Thursday inside the NWC Hall at the PDP national secretariat in Abuja, the nation’s capital.
“Pursuant to Part VI, Paragraph 14 of the Electoral Guidelines of our great Party, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), the National Working Committee (NWC) has approved the nomination of the following Party members to serve on the Vice Presidential Candidate Screening Committee for the screening/verifying of the nominated Vice Presidential Candidate of our Party for the 2023 general elections,” he said.
The committee which is chaired by former Minister of Foreign Affairs, Tom Ikimi, has Dr Akilu Indabawa and Sunday Omobo as secretary and administrative secretary respectively.
Its members include former governor of Kogi State, Idris Wada, former Minister of Aviation, Osita Chidoka, and Austin Opara.
Others are Professor Aisha Madawaki, Ayotunde George-Ologun, Chidiebelu Mofus, Fidelis Tapgun, Binta Bello, and Mutiat Adedoja.
A southerner is expected to emerge as the running mate of the party’s presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar, as the party positions itself to reclaim power at the centre following its defeat to the All Progressives Congress in 2015.
Atiku, who beat his co-contestants to win the PDP ticket, will be contesting for the highest office in the land for the sixth time having lost to President Muhammadu Buhari of the ruling APC in the 2019 polls.
The 75-year-old polled 371 votes to emerge as the party’s flagbearer ahead of Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State who scored 237 votes to come second in the contest.
Former Senate President Bukola Saraki (70); Akwa Ibom State Governor Udom Emmanuel (38), Bauchi State Governor Bala Mohammed (38), Former Senate President Pius Anyim (14), Mrs Tari Diana Oliver (One), and Mr Sam Ohuabunwa (1) shared the remainder of the valid votes.