As speculations and permutations continue on the presidential candidate the group of five (G5 Governors) , also known as Integrity Group will endorse for the 2023 presidency, a former commissioner in Rivers State has said that three out of the five governors have endorsed Peter Obi.
Obi is the candidate of the Labour Party for the 2023 presidential election.
Bola Tinubu, Atiku Abubakar and Rabiu Kwankwaso are the presidential candidates of the All Progressives Congress, Peoples Democratic Party and New Nigeria Peoples Party respectively.
Meanwhile, the five dissident governors of the Peoples Democratic Party l, led by Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State have expressed readiness to support a candidate from the Southern part of the country, believing that a Southerner should succeed President Muhammadu Buhari, a Northerner, who would have spent eight years in office by 2023.
This puts Tinubu and Obi in pole position for the endorsement of the G-5 Governors, namely Wike, Seyi Makinde of Oyo State, Samuel Ortom of Benue State, Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi of Enugu State and Okezie Ikpeazu of Abia State.
Ortom recently endorsed Obi in his state.
Better known as G5, the PDP governors who are currently meeting in London to reach a joint decision ahead of next year’s polls have been up in arms against their party for truncating the zoning arrangement for political offices.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that an ex-Rivers commissioner, who spoke on condition of anonymity, told the agency that three of the governors have endorsed Labour Party’s Obi, adding that their agitation was for power to shift to the South in line with the Lagos declaration by the southern governors.
The source said while three out of the five governors are convinced by Obi’s records, the other two are playing concerned about their political survival.
The former commissioner said: “You know the presidential contest is like a beauty contest, where only the registered participants are considered. The G5 governors agree that Obi is not a saint, but comes with fresher characteristics than the other candidates.
“In the first place, it was these contrasting qualities, plus Muslim-Muslim ticket that attracted the mass following among major electoral demography, the youths, across the length and breadth of the country for Obi.
“So, I can tell you authoritatively, the three governors in support of Obi are contending that although APC has spread, it will be disastrous and suicidal if they support Tinubu with (an) awkward ticket against their people, majority of whom are for Obi.
“The three governors are therefore mindful of Electoral Act 2022 and the enormous powers and independence it has given to the electorate.”
On where Wike stands, the former commissioner noted that the Rivers governor is aware that all politics is local. “Wike is not entirely against Asiwaju (Tinubu), but he’s deeply concerned about how his political traducers in the state would react if he slips.”