Wike was instrumental to Peter Obi’s exit from PDP, says Paul Ibe

Fredrick Nwabufo
Fredrick Nwabufo

Paul Ibe, media adviser to Atiku Abubakar, former vice-president, says Nyesom Wike, minister of the federal capital territory (FCT), orchestrated Peter Obi’s exit from the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

Speaking in an interview on the ‘Mic On podcast’ hosted by Seun Okinbaloye, a journalist with Channels Television, Ibe said Wike frustrated the efforts of the party to zone the 2023 presidential ticket to the south-east.

Ibe added that Abubakar was willing to let go of his presidential aspiration on the condition that the presidency was micro-zoned to the south-east region where Obi hails from.


On May 25, 2022, Obi, former governor of Anambra, resigned his membership of the PDP.

Obi left the PDP days to the party’s presidential primary, stating that “recent developments in the party do not support constructive contributions”.

On May 27, 2022, Obi joined the Labour Party (LP).

The former governor was scheduled to participate in the PDP presidential primary scheduled for May 28, 2022.

He said his decision to join LP aligned with the interest of Nigerians across different sectors, adding that he wanted to take the country from consumption to production.

On May 30, 2022 , Obi was declared winner of the LP presidential primary.


On May 28, 2022, the special national convention of the PDP took place in the velodrome of the MKO Abiola Stadium, Abuja.

Prior to the commencement of voting, Aminu Tambuwal, then Sokoto governor, withdrew from the contest.

Tambuwal asked his supporters to support Atiku’s candidacy. Abubakar won the presidential ticket of the PDP.

To clinch the ticket, he floored Bukola Saraki, former senate president; Udom Emmanuel, ex-Akwa Ibom governor; Nyesom Wike, then Rivers governor; Ayo Fayose, former governor of Ekiti; and Bala Mohammed, Bauchi governor; among others.

Abubakar polled 371 votes and was declared the winner, while Wike, his closest challenger, secured 237 votes. Saraki placed third with 70 votes, followed by Emmanuel (38), and Mohammed (20).


Ibe stated that Atiku was willing for the PDP ticket zone to be zoned to the south-east but Wike countered Atiku’s position and insisted that the ticket be thrown open to the three geopolitical zones in the south.

“Wike was also instrumental to the exit of Obi because he promoted the zoning of the presidency to the south. He believed that if it was zoned to the south, not the south-east, he would be in the best position to get the ticket.

“Whatever interest Wike is showing clearly shows that it’s at variance with the interest of the PDP. There is no doubt about it that the Atiku-Obi ticket of 2019 was viable, and it still remains viable because the LP took away some of the votes of the PDP in the 2023 presidential election,” Ibe said.

Since the PDP and LP lost to the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the 2023 poll, the leading opposition party has yet to resolve its internal crisis.

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