The former Deputy President of the Senate, Prof Ike Ekweremadu, on Thursday, finally withdrew from the 2023 governorship race in Enugu State.
Ekweremadu made this known in a statement titled, “Time to unite; Ndi Enugu”, which was made available to The PUNCH on Thursday.
The lawmaker said he took the decision after consulting widely with the elders of the Peoples Democratic Party as well friends and respected elders across the country and beyond.
He said, “My dear friends, associates, and well-wishers, I know you have been waiting to hear from me. You have expressed to me individually and collectively your readiness to take a long journey with me to actualise our vision by whatever platform. I have deeply reflected on it all with a good sense of history, including my political history, and the need for the unity and peace of our state. No sacrifice will be too much. Therefore, I have come to a decision. Please, bear with me if my decision does not meet your expectations. I call for your understanding.”
“After consulting widely with the elders of our party as well as well meaning friends and respected elders across the country and beyond;
“After a long and painstaking introspection on our contributions to the development of the PDP;
“After considering the current security situation in the South East region and the need not to put anybody in harms way by a foreseeable combustive political environment, as my ambition is not worth the life of any Enugu son or daughter;
“After considering that the things that hold us together as Ndi Enugu will ultimately outlive the treacheries of the moment;
“After receiving assurances from the gubernatorial candidate of our party, Barr. Peter Mba, that he would integrate our “Pathway to a New Enugu State” in his programme and his assurances of the participation of everybody in his campaign team and government;
“I, Senator Ike Ekweremadu, hereby formally withdraw from the 2023 gubernatorial contest in Enugu State. I congratulate Barr. Peter Mba and wish him success.”