Rivers Governor, Nyesom Wike, and his Adamawa counterpart, Ahmadu Fintiri, have reflected on the type of presidential candidate the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) needs to take over power in 2023.
While Wike was concerned about how and when the candidate would emerge, Fintiri dwelled on the character and qualities of the candidate, saying he was not in support of zoning.
A statement signed by Wike’s Special Assistant, Media, Kelvin Ebiri, said the duo spoke when Wike paid a courtesy visit to Fintiri at the Government House, Yola on Friday.
Wike and his entourage were in Yola to appreciate Fintiri, who was the Chairman of the PDP Convention Planning Committee for successfully conducting the exercise.
Wike said stakeholders in the party would at the right time collectively decide the presidential candidate.
He boasted that the PDP was ready to take over power at the centre in 2023 following the success of its convention.
The Rivers Governor commended Fintiri and members of the PDP convention planning committee for making the party proud by conducting a transparent and rancour-free convention.
Wike said that those who had not participated in organising a party convention might presume it was an easy feat to accomplish.
He said: “At a time most people were expecting that it may not work out for PDP. It only did not work out well, it was peacefully conducted, the best ever conducted since PDP started.
“I believe that when people have done well, you commend them. When you give them another opportunity, they will put in their best. And that is one of things I have come today to say my brother, you’ve done well with your people. You did not put us to shame.”
Wike noted that when he and others nominated Fintiri as the chairman of the convention planning committee, they never had any reservation about his capacity to deliver a credible and transparent convention.
The Governor also used the occasion to shower encomium on Fintiri for his developmental strides in Adamawa State, particularly in Yola, the State capital.
He said: “How much does he get from the federation account yet he is able to judiciously put them into use for the interest and development of Adamawa State. If other people had done this within the city, he would have moved on to other areas that need attention. I want to plea to all of you to continue to give him the support.”
In his remarks, Fintiri said the successful conduct of PDP convention had provided Nigerians, especially the younger generation, an alternative platform to elect the next Nigerian president in 2023.
He urged Wike, who he acknowledged contributed immeasurably to the success of the convention, not to relent in his support for the party in the years ahead.
He said: “We are not just colleagues, we are not just in the same party, we have discovered ourselves to be good friends and even metamorphosing into being brothers. This is what we need in this country.
“That is why I am not a supporter of those who are calling for zoning of the presidency. I am for those that are calling for good candidate that can bring this country together, and improve on the potentials that abound in both human and capital of Nigeria.
” But, I trust that whoever we are going to get as our presidential candidate in 2023, will be the person that Nigerians want, will be the person that understands this country and will be the person that will pull this country together and put her where she belongs in the comity of nations.”