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Mr. Aminu Tambuwal, Speaker, House of Representatives

Tambuwal to pitch tent with APC, may join presidential race

Speaker of the House of Representatives, Hon Aminu Waziri Tambuwal, may soon dump the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) for the opposition All Progressives Congress (APC).Also, the Speaker may declare his intention to contest the 2015 presidential race on the platform of the APC thereafter.Competent sources told Daily Sun that the Tambuwal camp has concluded plans to dump the PDP, but waiting for the court’s ruling on the suit instituted by the PDP against change of leadership in the House. The court in Abuja had already fixed March 31 for ruling on the case. Daily Sun gathered that Tambuwal, dissatisfied with goings-on in the PD, had long made up his mind to pitch his tent with the APC, which has, in recent times, been welcoming politicians from other political parties. In the last three months, five governors and some federallaw makers had defected from PDP to APC.

The Governors are Chibuike Amaechi (Rivers), Rabiu Kwankwaso (Kano), Murtala Nyako (Adamawa), Abdulfatah Ahmed (Kwara) amd Aliyu Wamakko (Sokoto) .Sources revealed that Tambuwal delayed joining APC because of his position as Speaker, as he feared that defecting to APC before the determination of the case over leadership change in the House, may cost him his position in the House leadership and thereby jeopardise the bigger plan on the 2015 presidential election. Despite not officially joining the APC, the Speaker has, however, been publicly identifying with the party, as he attends some of the functions of the party’s governors. With the ruling on the matter coming at the end of the month, it was gathered, the Speaker’s camp has put the members on notice that the time has come to move to APC.

Reliable sources revealed that when Tambuwal defects to PDP, about 30 members of the House of Representatives may also dump the party and thereby give the APC the majority. The Speaker, it was learnt, may also resign as the head of the House, to pave the way for the election of a new speaker. In the election, Tambuwal will be nominated for the post.

“Well, when the election comes, Tambuwal will be nominated by his colleagues from the APC for the Speakership. Since the APC would have a majority by then, even if lawmakers from All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA), Labour Party (LP) and Accord Party (AP) team up with the PDP, he would be re-elected as Speaker. What he needs is a simple majority to be so elected,” a source told Daily Sun. Checks also revealed that Tambuwal’s defection is hinged on 2015 presidential race. With his popularity, it was gathered, some leaders in the North, in the plan to have a northerner become president in 2015, see the Speaker as the only northern politician who could be accepted across the country and therefore, want him to run.

Among those in the plot to draft Tambuwal into the presidential race, sources revealed, is former military President, General Ibrahim Babangida, who had once encouraged the Speaker to go for higher responsibility. Babangida had early last year, while speaking at Vanguard Man of the Year Award 2012, stated: “When leaders like Tambuwal delivered on their electoral promise, we advise them to try something higher. For Tambuwal, your guess is as good as mine. Well done.” Daily Sun gathered that other northern leaders have been enlisted in the Tambuwal 2015 plan, but waiting until the Speaker declared public before coming out to support him.

As part of the plan, Tambuwal has been making consultations across the country. In the course of consultations, the Speaker has visited former President Olusegun Obasanjo and some APC governors.It was also gathered that National Leader of the APC and former governor of Lagos, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, is favourably disposed to Tambuwal being the presidential candidate of the APC. Sources around Tinubu revealed that the former governor would personally head a team to persuade former Head of State, General Muhammadu Buhari, to shelve any plan to contest the presidential election in 2015 if Tambuwal joins the party.

Meanwhile, Tambuwal has always insisted that he’s still a member of the PDP. When he visited Obasanjo about two weeks ago, he reaffirmed his membership of the PDP. [The Sun]

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