GOVERNOR Rochas Okorocha of Imo State has described the defection of former Vice President Atiku Abubakar from APC to PDP as a great loss to the ruling party.
Okorocha spoke in Akungba Akoko after being conferred with the Honorary Degree of Doctor of Letters by the Senate of Adekunle Ajasin University.
He said: “I have taken a holistic view of our party. It is not the best because no matter what anybody thinks, Atiku carries some political weight. His leaving our party is not the best.”
He, however, said it would not affect the chances of the APC in the 2019 general elections.
“But all said and done, since he has forged ahead by going to another political party, we will make amends and his place will be filled up accordingly.”
He also faulted Bola Tinubu over the latter’s rejection of the endorsement of President Muhammadu Buhari for second term by governors of the All Progressives Congress, APC.
Tinubu had told reporters that the endorsement of Buhari by governors was of no consequence.
He said there would be no automatic ticket for President Buhari to contest the presidential election scheduled to hold in February 2019.
Tinubu spoke last month in Akure, Ondo State capital, where he noted that the APC governors alone could not determine who would be the presidential flag bearer of the party.
But Okorocha said it was wrong for the former Lagos State governor to fault the decision of the governors to support Buhari since it did not mean that there would not be a primary election.
He said Tinubu had no right to criticise the governors for endorsing Buhari for a second term in office.
“The statement credited to our national leader came to me as a surprise.
“Come to think of it, I never referred to him. I referred to the governors of Nigeria, including the PDP, and I said only one or two of them have not joined yet.
“Since I made the statement, no governor has said something contrary to what I said. I am surprised that Asiwaju will now be speaking for the governors.
“He looks like somebody crying more than the bereaved. I did not see the reason for the statement actually.
“But he commands my respect and I don’t want to join issue with the national leader of my party.
“What I mentioned was for the governors. And, secondly, what I said was support. The word I used was support and that does not mean there will not be primaries.
“Governors can only contribute only 37 votes. We still have over 5,000 votes up there. What I was talking about was governors.
“I was not talking about other party members. Governors alone do not determine the flag-bearer of a party,” Okorocha said. – NewsRangers
– Dec 11, 2017 @ 09:56 GMT |