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APC VP Slot: Party chieftains in make or mar meeting

Anxiety grips party members as Tinubu’s name comes up

THE All Progressives Congress (APC) has thrown its teeming supporters into a frenzy due to  the anxiety and intrigues trailing the choosing of the running mate to its presidential candidate, General Muhammadu Buhari.

Nigerians and the opposition are waiting with bated breath for the outcome of the search for Buhari’s running mate.

The national leadership of the party commenced a meeting on Monday night to resolve the logjam over who clinches the number two ticket.

Party spokesman, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, told the Nigerian Tribune that the meeting was about commencing around 7.00 p.m. As of press time, it was still on at the Rivers Governor’s Lodge in Abuja.

Nigerian Tribune gathered that leaders of the party may end up voting over who becomes the running mate to its presidential candidate, General Buhari.

When Mohammed was asked for the agenda of the meeting, he said “all I know is that a meeting is taking place. I don’t know the agenda. I also don’t know the names being considered. But we are meeting over the running-mate issue.”

Chieftains of the party, as of Monday night, were in Abuja to attend a make or mar marathon meeting on the choice of the running mate reportedly zoned by the party to the South-West.

Governors of the party are also expected to attend the late night meeting, with their platform said to be backing the candidacy of either Rivers State governor, Rotimi Ameachi or Edo State governor, Adams Oshiomhole.

It was also gathered that names of Professor Yemi Osinbajo and that of Senator Olorunnimbe Mamora were allegedly being considered by the national leader of the party, Senator Bola Tinubu, the running mate to Buhari.

Last week Friday, in what appears like testing of the waters, a breaking news that quickly spread like wild fire said Rivers State governor, Rotimi Amaechi, had been chosen to fill the slot. It was quickly denied at the end of the day.

On Monday, two names, Professor Osinbajo and that of Senator Bola Tinubu, were bandied on the social media as breaking news. All this happened even before the meeting to choose the candidate took place.

Their supporters and opponents followed up with the implication of the choice of running mate for General Buhari.

The party, it was further learnt, was being careful in arriving at the final choice of its running mate, with consideration on political relevance of the candidate and the choice of zone.

The APC leaders were torn over the choices of block votes from the South West by producing a candidate from the zone and how to get massive votes from the South South and South East zones in the election.

Sahara Reporters, an online news medium, on Monday, reported that former governor of Lagos State and a national leader of the party, Tinubu, had reportedly forced members of the South-West caucus of the party to endorse him as the running mate to Buhari.

The medium further quoted party sources as saying that Tinubu revived his ambition, despite the party deciding at the end of the convention not to present him for the slot.

Participants, Sahara Reporters reported, at a Sunday night meeting convened by Tinubu, were shocked at his sudden U-turn.

They said his hold on the party left several of them unable to refuse his decision to present himself as candidate, with the fact that it will be a Muslim/Muslim ticket.

Some members of the caucus, however, refused to sign the so-called endorsement, which will be considered at an enlarged party meeting in Abuja, on Monday night.

Those kicking against Tinubu’s emergence have, however, reportedly come up with another idea of him going to the Senate and eventually becoming the Senate President, since he had been a member of the Red Chamber once, on the ticket of the Social Democratic Party (SDP).

When the news of Amaechi’s choice as Buhari’s running mate filtered through on the social media, Dr Doyin Okupe, an aide to President Goodluck Jonathan, had said a ticket ofBuhari and Amaechi for the 2015 presidential election would be a “fatal error” on the part of APC.

[Tribune]

 

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