Ben Ezechime, Enugu
The Enugu State chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) is expected to receive the Presidential candidate of the party and former Vice President of Nigerian, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, on a campaign tour of the state ahead of February 25, 2023 presidential election.
Already, venue of the rally, Michael Okpara Square is a beehive of activities with the arrival of some local government chairmen and their supporters.
Also, some support groups for the governorship candidate of the party, Mr Peter Mbah, and Gburugburu support groups are on hand at the square
However, the major talking point at the Michael Okpara Square remains whether Gov. Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, a member of G-5 Governors will attend the rally or not.
A source told Ikengaonline that the possibility of Ugwuanyi attending the rally was above 50 per cent due to the fear that he may be suspended by the party if he fails to attend.
According to our source, the governor was specifically directed by the PDP national chairman, Dr Iyorchia Ayu, to provide funding for the rally and to ensure mobilisation of supporters for the rally through the state chapter.
“Apart from the fear of suspension, the governor is also under pressure by some notable founding fathers of the party in the state including Chief Jim Nwobodo for him to dump the G-5 governors.
“Nwobodo has made it clear to Ugwuanyi that the state cannot afford to be in opposition, having been in the party since its formation in 1998,” the source said.
Presently, at the Okpara Square venue of the event, there is no notable political appointee of Ugwuanyi’s administration seated; party elders are also not yet present.
A party chieftain inside the arena who spoke to Ikengaonline on the condition of anonymity said the governor had not said anything.
“He has not said whether he will attend or not. You know his style, he hardly talks,” he said.
He said that Ugwuanyi may not likely attend the rally, adding that, it may create big problem for him.
“We were told that, Wike is piling pressure on him,” he said.