Governor Samuel Ortom of Benue State was among some governors of the main opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) that boycotted the inauguration of the Peoples Democratic Party Presidential Campaign Council (PCC) and book launch in honour of the party’s presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar in Abuja. Other governors elected on the platform of the party that stayed away from the event as gathered included Seyi Makinde (Oyo), Okezie Ikpeazu (Abia), Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi (Enugu) and Nyesom Wike (Rivers) among others.
The PDP National Chairman, Dr. Iyorchia Ayu, was equally conspicuously missing but his Deputy, (North), Umar Damagum, however, said Ayu was absent as a result of ill-health. But other PDP governors in attendance include Governors Ahmadu Fintiri (Adamawa), Diri Duoye (Bayelsa), Bala Mohammed (Bauchi), Godwin Obaseki (Edo), Udom Emmanuel (Akwa Ibom), Aminu Tambuwal (Sokoto), and Darius Ishaku (Taraba). Ortom’s absence at the event is not unconnected with what he often termed “injustice meted out to the Rivers State Governor, his closest ally by the leadership of the party following the outcome of the party’s convention that saw former Vice-President Atiku Abubakar emerged as the candidate of the party.
The convention ripples which triggered off the ongoing crisis that tore the party into shreds, also saw the aggrieved governors gang up with some of them insisting on the ouster of Ayu as a condition for the return of enduring peace in the party’s fold to emerge victorious in next years general elections.