Unknown to many ,The Deputy President of the Senate, Dr. Ike Ekweremadu is the real person behind Igbo not supporting Obi as Atiku’s VP.. Umahi, the Ebonyi State Governor, is being used.
Now, Ekweremadu, who was one of those considered by Atiku Abubakar as running mate in the 2019 presidential election believe firmly that he is more qualified than Obi. He had also discussed it with Saraki..So the hope was high.
Atiku, had on Friday picked Obi as running mate, drawing the ire of South-east Governors’ Forum, which protested the decision on the grounds that it was not consulted.
The Board of Trustees (BOT) of the party had also been reported to have complained that it was also not consulted before the decision was made,.. the National Chairman, Mr. Uche Secondus, was, however, carried along.
Atiku actually nominated three persons, namely the National Organising Secretary, Col. Austin Akobundu (rtd); Deputy Senate President, Senator Ike Ekweremadu; and Obi.
“After settling for Obi, he failed to formally inform the party before going public.
According to sources,complaint about lack of wide consultation appeared plausible, some of Igbo politicians feel their political career would be jeopardised by Obi’s emergence.
Ekweremadu’s position as deputy president of the Senate would become untenable once the party wins the 2019 general election as the South-east zone could not possibly have the vice president and retain the deputy Senate presidency.
Governor Dave Umahi of Ebonyi State, who announced the region’s governors’ objection, is said to be masquerading his personal interest under governors’ platform as he is believed to harbour presidential ambition and is suspected to be working with President Muhammadu Buhari.
Known admirer of Buhari, Umahi is said to be working for his friend to throw spanner in the works of the opposition party so that once Buhari finishes his second term he could be backed for the presidency by Buhari in 2023 when it is presumed the Igbo would be conceded the presidency. “An Obi vice presidency would endanger that calculation,” a reliable source said.
Also in the anti-Obi campaign is Governor Willie Obiano of Anambra State. Though an All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) chieftain, he is said to have an old score to settle with Obi and feels threatened that should the former state governor become vice president, he might be run out of town.
Abubakar had sent a message to the Eastern governors forum that he was travelling outside the country for a few days and would on his return brief them on why he chose Obi as his running mate without consulting them.