APC convention: Tinubu, others kick against Buhari’s consensus arrangement

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National leader of the All Progressives Congress, Bola Tinubu, former governors of Borno and Benue states, Sen. Ali Modu Sheriff and Sen George Akume have kicked against plans to foist a consensus candidature on the party ahead of the convention, National Daily has gathered.

It was learned that some of those moving for consensus are elements of the defunct Congress for Progressive Change, CPC, President Muhammadu Buhari’s former party.

Selection of delegates for the event, which is slated February 26, 2022,   may be another source of crises in the party given the factionalisation of some state chapters.

In affected states like Kano, Kwara, Gombe and Zamfara, some camps are loyal to governors while others are led by some party chieftains.

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“The concern among those of the CPC bloc is that with Mr. President out of the way in 2023, the party would effectively be in the hands of those from the defunct Action Congress of Nigeria, CAN,” said a party source.

According to him, without a consensus arrangement, Tinubu is likely to have his way at both the February 26 APC National Convention and its forthcoming presidential convention.

He said: “Both Akume and Shettima are seen as close allies of Tinubu. While Shettima has not come out to declare interest in the national chairmanship, Akume is strongly in the race. Nobody understands Tinubu’s joker.

“However, the major concern is even the presidential convention. It is feared that except the former Lagos governor is “tamed” at the national convention, it would be difficult doing so at the presidential convention. Interestingly, Tinubu is like a bone stuck to their necks. Swallowing it is not easy. Coughing it out is an uphill task”.

However, an aide of the former Lagos governor who spoke in confidence described the consensus arrangement being advocated by some forces as a fraud.

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“It is a fraudulent arrangement. Let everybody go into the race and let the people decide. That is the minimum. Why are they afraid of an open contest?” he queried.

Recall that an ally of Tinubu and former Secretary to the Government of the Federation, SGF, Babachir Lawal, had at a summit last Monday, in Abuja, said the Tinubu camp would prefer the option of direct primary.

He said Tinubu’s supporters will deliver the presidency to him through consensus, indirect or direct party primaries.

“We are neither offended nor threatened by whichever method the party chooses to adopt for the emergence of its presidential candidate. But of course, being democrats, we prefer a method that involves all the card-carrying members of the party,” he explained.