There are indications that fresh crisis may be looming in the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) over political machinations to zone the 2023 presidential ticket of the party to the northeast. Strong insinuations are emerging that prominent APC leaders from the north are negotiating zoning the 2023 presidential ticket to the northeast, while a prospective candidate is being groomed for the presidential race to succeed President Muhammadu Buhari after his second tenure in 2023.
A source from the APC Secretariat in Abuja revealed to National Daily that northern APC leaders are working on a reliable candidate in place of Governor Nasir El-Rufai of Kaduna State who have been in the frontline of the 2023 presidential race. The source added that a senator from the northeast in the ninth National Assembly is bring considered by the northern leaders for the APC presidential ticket in 2023.
According the source, they see El-Rufai to be too controversial and may be a difficult candidate to market for the party. More so, sponsoring El-Rufai from the northwest to succeed President Buhari also from the northwest in 2023 will be a difficult message to send to Nigerians in 2023. Thus, they have been grooming the senator and deepening negotiation and horse trading to consolidate their support base.
The source added that the northern leaders are, however, not oblivion about the expectations of power rotation to the south after the second tenure of President Buhari in 2023, but they are resolved in promoting their interest in the country. “Apparently, the northern APC leaders,” he said, “are conscious of the crisis the rotation of the president to the northeast in 2023 would generate, essentially, with the high curiosity from party leaders in the southwest.”
The negotiations were said to have been going on for a long time in the party. The northern leaders in the APC are conscious that the decision may threaten the existing alliance with the southwest in the party.
There are fears that the establishment of Amotekun, a security structure, by southwest governors may, hypothetically, be an indirect proactive response to the perceived power shift to the northeast in 2023, which may extend the looming crisis beyond the bounds of the ruling party
Accordingly, the northern APC leaders were said to have been negotiating for vice presidential candidate with certain APC stakeholders from the south-south with an incursion into the southwest. The southern arrowhead aspirants for the vice-presidential ticket in 2023 were said to be offered significant appointments in the Buhari administration towards strengthening and empowering them to prepare for the 2023 presidential race. They are aided to build strong support base in the south for the northern APC presidential candidate in 2023.
National Daily will bring you details of the negotiations in subsequent reports.