Nyesom Wike -Governor of Rivers State.

The governor of Rivers State and a member of the G5, Nyesom Wike has on Tuesday announced plans to declare his preferred choice of candidates for the 2023 presidential elections. During the announcement, Gov Wike charged voters to cast their vote for his party’s gubernatorial candidate as well as the National Assembly to State Assembly candidates.

Why it matters 
Gov Wike and four other governor-members of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) have openly distanced themselves from the presidential campaign of the party’s leadership and flag bearer, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar. With less than ninety 90 days until Election Day, PDP is not assured of the support of five of its governor-members.

The big picture 
Gov Wike has honored several closed-door meetings with the Labour Party presidential candidate Mr. Peter Obi and the candidate of the All-Progressive Congress (APC), Bola Ahmed Tinubu. With the ongoing fracas in the PDP, reports claim that the governor might endorse one of his party’s opposition candidates.

Rivers State Relevance 
All elected office holders in Gov Wike’s Rivers State including his deputy Governor, and members of the state’s parliament are members of the PDP. In the 2019 election, Rivers State recorded 3.21 million registered voters which named Rivers State as the state with the largest number of voters in the south-south region. The south-south is again the second region with the most registrants in the suspended continuous voters registration exercise with 2,458,095 registrants. A tally in which Rivers State added 473,924 newly registered voters as revealed by INEC. 

Away from that, the south-south region is a highly desirable region as neither Labour Party nor APC has a strong representation in the region. A vote of confidence by a PDP governor would prove decisive in winning the hearts of the people in the region. 

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