Dr. Dawari George, a former member of the Federal House of Representatives, who represented Akuku-toru/Asari-Toru Federal Constituency in the Green chamber of the National Assembly, has emerged as the Rivers State Governorship Candidate for Action Alliance (AA) Political party, to fly the party’s flag, at the 2023 general elections.
Kalabari-born Dawari George polled 93 votes to emerge as the party’s Gubernatorial candidate in the consensus substitution primary, monitored by representatives of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), the Director of Security Services (DSS) and the Nigeria Police Force, on Wednesday, August 10, 2022.
He was then officially recognized as the winner of the substitution primary process, by the Chairman of the substitution electoral panel of AA, Ata Joseph Esuikyo, while the National Chairman of the Party, Kenneth Udeze presented him to the State.
Reacting to his emergence as the Rivers AA Guber Candidate for the 2023 election, Dr. Dawari George said: “I come into the race with Character, Competence and Commitment to work for the rapid and wholesome development of our dear State, where everyone can aspire to achieve their dreams in a serene environment, with the support of a responsive and responsible government.”
Dr. Dawari George was amongst a host of top Rivers State All Progressives Congress (APC) chieftains hitherto loyal to former Minister of Transportation, Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi, who decamped from the party, citing the single handed selection of Tonye Cole, an oil industry mogul and 1999 APC Rivers guber Candidate, to fly the party’s flag again in the 2023 guber race, as well as the Muslim-Muslim joint presidential ticket of APC, amongst others, as reasons for their defection.
Prior to the emergence of Dr. Dawari George as the Rivers AA substitution primary gubernatorial consensus Candidate, two names had earlier been listed, purportedly released by INEC, as AA Rivers governoship flagbearers, in two seperate reports.
The first list released on June 22, 2022 and widely reported on several media platforms, had Mr. Benjamin Abednego Olimini, who defeated Pastor Ezekiel Warigbani by 34 votes to 26 votes to emerge as the Rivers AA Guber Candidate, in the primary election conducted in Port Harcourt, on Monday, June 6, 2022.
The second list purportedly displayed at the INEC office, Port Harcourt and widely reported by major national and online publications on July 25 2022, had 37 year old Victor Tamunoemibaka Somiari, as the Rivers AA Guber Candidate.
It was not clear if either or both of these listed Rivers AA candidates, had formally written to withdraw their candidacy, as stipulated by INEC.
However Abednego Olimini Benjamin, reacting to the emergence of Dr. Dawari George on Wednesday, August 10, wrote the following on his verified Facebook social media handle: Abednego Oli Ben.
“I remain the sole Rivers State Gubernatorial candidate of Action Alliance for the 2023 election, not Dawari George
The rule of law will surely prevail.”
Recall also that another prominent chieftain of Rivers APC, Sen. Magnus Abe, recently picked the guber ticket of the Social Democratic Party, SDP in another substitution primary, which was reportedly organized by SDP party officials and monitored by INEC representatives.
Sen. Abe had equally defected from the Rivers All Progressives Congress APC, to the SDP, following a protracted Political tussle with party leader and former Transportation Minister, Rotimi Amaechi, which resulted in a persona-non-grata status in the party, imposed on the former Rivers South East Senator and his supporters, by the Minister and Rivers APC leaders and stakeholders who were loyal to him.
Rivers SDP watchers are also aware that the name earlier listed by INEC as the party’s Gubernatorial candidate for 2023, is that of Rt. Hon. Maurice Pronen, former member representing Khana/Gokana Federal Constituency in the National Assembly.
It was also not clear as at press time if Hon. Pronen had officially withdrawn from the race as stipulated by INEC to legitimize the substitution primary from which Sen. Abe emerged as the party’s Rivers Gubernatorial candidate for 2023 election.
RIVERS GUBER CANDIDATES FOR 2023 ELECTION
As at August 10, 2022, the Rivers State Governorship Election 2023 updated list of Governorship Candidates, both from original and substitution Primaries, are:
1. Accord Party (A.) – CHIEF DUMO LULU-BRIGGS
2. Action Alliance (AA) – DR. DAWARI GEORGE
3. African Action Congress (AAC) – DADA JOSEPH OBELE NGECHU
4. African Democratic Congress (ADC) – MR TONTE IBRAYE
5. African Democratic Party (ADP) – MR. VICTOR FINGESI
6. All Progressives Congress (APC) – ARC. TONYE COLE
7. All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) – PRINCE UGO BEKE
8. Allied Peoples Movement (APM) – REV’D DR BARR EKWU INNOCENT
9. Labour Party (LP) – COMR. (MRS) BEATRICE ITUBO
10. National Rescue Movement (NRM) – HON. AMB. SOBOMABO JACKRICH
11. Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) – SIR SIMINIALAYI FUBARA
12. Peoples Redemption Party (PRP) – HON. EMIYAREI ETETE SOBERE
13. Young Progressive Party (YPP) – DANAGOGO WENIKE-BRIGGS
14. Action Peoples Party (APP) – DR. LESSI GBOROGBOSI
15. Social Democratic Party (SDP) – SEN. MAGNUS ABE
16. Zenith Labour Party (ZLP) – COOKEY SOPHIA
17. Allied Peoples Movement (APM) – FAYE-OFORI CHURCHILL
18. Boot Party – NWANZE MICHAEL
This list is pending, and of course subject to INEC’s final approval, endorsement and release,which is expected by October 4th, 2022, according to the election timetable.