Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers, on Thursday warned Iyorchia Ayu, national chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), to thread softly, otherwise, his arrogance will lead to his downfall.
The governor also alleged that Ayu’s refusal to step down as chairman of the party, despite insistence by Wike’s faction that his resignation is a pre-condition for reconciling with Atiku Abubakar, is because of the billions of naira made from sale of forms during the party’s primary elections.
The governor made these remarks in reaction to recent remarks made by Ayu on calls for his resignation.
While speaking in an interview with BBC Hausa on Wednesday, Ayu said those demanding his resignation are children.
“When we started the PDP journey, we did not see these children. They are children who do not know why we established this party,” he had said.
“We will not allow one person to come and destroy our party.”
Recall that Wike’s allies demanded that the PDP national chairman should step down — as a precondition for resolving the rift with Atiku Abubakar, the party’s presidential candidate.
Some members of the party’s national working committee national (NWC) are also said to be pushing for a probe of the party’s finances under Ayu’s watch.
Speaking on Thursday at the inauguration of roads in Ikwerre LGA of the state, Wike said those who Ayu described as children brought him from nothing to be chairman of the party.
He said if Ayu remains arrogant and refuses to resign, it may cost the PDP the 2023 presidential election.
“You can imagine what power can do. You can imagine how ingratitude — how people can be ingrates in their lives,” Wike said.
“I thought as a chairman of a party who wants to win elections, your business is to bring peace to your party; your business is not to divide your party. Your business is not to show arrogance to your party.
“Yes, the children brought you to be chairman of the party. The children brought you from the gutter to make you chairman.
“Ayu, you were impeached as senate president. Ayu, you were sacked by Obasanjo in his administration. Arrogance cannot take you anywhere.
“Now, we have seen that you don’t want the party to win the election. We will help you.
“These children — these people you call boys — brought you from nothing.”
“You were sleeping in your house, calling me per second, saying my brother, my brother. Today all those who brought you as Chairman are all boys. Nigerians have seen how ungrateful some of you can be.
“And that is why Nigerians are also careful, thinking if you give these people power, how grateful will they be to Nigerians? I’ve kept quiet thinking we will reconcile. Now that you have become arrogant to say, you were elected. Where did you campaign. Where were your campaign posters. Even when we gave you money to print posters, you pocketed it.
“Hire all the media moguls, hire all social media top people, write all you can write, it will not save you. Carry all the television houses working for you, it will not bother me at all. I do what my conscience tells me to do and what is right for our people.
“A man who is inconsistent and ran away from the party, telling us who spent our time, had sleepless nights to make sure this party does not go down. Now he has the audacity we are children. We will tell him you’re a prodigal father. A man that was impeached, sacked, ran away from the party is now coming to say, I’m founding member of the party. Then you ran away.”