There are strong indications suggesting that President Muhammadu Buhari will likely anoint a successor and propose a consensus presidential candidate for the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) in next week’s primaries.
The Eagleonline reports that President Buhari gave this indication earlier on Tuesday during his meeting with the APC governors and Chairman of the party in what is considered as the strongest hint yet that the President will soon endorse his Vice President, Prof Yemi Osinbajo, SAN, according to impeccable Aso Villa sources at the meeting.
According to the President, the objective of the APC “must be the victory of our party and our choice of (presidential) candidate must be someone who would give the Nigerian masses a sense of victory and confidence even before the elections.”
This is believed by Presidential sources to be a direct reference to what has been the far-flung and widespread support the Vice President has garnered in the last several weeks after he declared to run for President and then embarked on a nationwide interaction with APC delegates and stakeholders.
In fact, the source who was present at the meeting added that the Governors told the President they would embark on consultations following his message to the APC Governors at the meeting.
According to the President “I wish to solicit the reciprocity and support of the Governors and other stakeholders in picking my successor, who would fly the flag of our party for election into the office of the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria in 2023.”
He explained that already APC “has successfully established internal policies that promote continuity and smooth succession plans even at the state and local government levels. For example, first term Governors who have served credibly well have been encouraged to stand for re-election. Similarly, second term Governors have been accorded the privilege of promoting successors that are capable of driving their visions as well as the ideals of the party.
“As we approach the convention, I appeal to all of you to allow our interests to converge, our focus to remain on the changing dynamics of our environment, the expectations of our citizens and the global community. Our objective must be the victory of our party and our choice of candidate must be someone who would give the Nigerian masses a sense of victory and confidence even before the elections.”
Observers said in talking about how the party has encouraged first term Governors to go for a second term “the President was urging for consistency in choice of the party’s flagbearer and also hinting on his preference for continuity through his deputy.”
Following the meeting with the President, the APC governors are currently meeting in Abuja on the consensus candidate for the party.
Governor Abdullahi Sule of Nasarawa State made this disclosure while appearing on Politics Today on the Channels TV.
He said, “I am here today because I promised you I will be physically here. If not so, I should be in the meeting currently held by the APC governors to discuss the issue of consensus candidate. The moment I leave here, I will go straight to join the meeting.”