APC SHOPS FOR PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE BELLOW 50 YEARS…….FATE OF BUHARI, ATIKU, KWANKWASO UNCERTAIN.
Indications have emerged that the top hierarchy of All Progressives Congress (APC) is set to consider mainly candidates below 50 years in prepartion for the party’s primary election for that will produce a flag bearer for the next year’s presidential election.
Investigation conducted by Nigerian NewsDirect revealed that the secret arrangement being kept away from defectors is being spearheaded by the national leader of the party, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu. The consideration of mainly candidates below 50 years according to a source close to Bourdillon House of Tinubu is designed to replicate in Nigeria the success recorded by President Barrack Obama in turning around the economy of United States (US) mismanaged by the Republican Party. In order to ensure the success of this arrangement, the performance of APC governors and National Assembly members who are below 50 years are currently being examined.
“The choice of APC flag bearer will shock several politicians the same way others were shocked when Asiwaju, a master strategist selected Gov Babatunde Fashola as the gubernatorial flag bearers of the defunct Action Congress of Nigeria in 2007,he assured.
The idea of Obama model , Nigerian NewsDirect learnt was sold to the leadership of the party by the American Public Relations outfit hired by the party to project its image. The company, AKPD Message and media was the company that handled Obama’s famous 2009 presidential campaign. Obama was 46 years when he was inaugurated as American President on January 20, 2009.
Interestingly, among all the names being touted as Presidential candidate of APC, the Speaker , House of Representatives, Aminu Tambuwal is the only person below 50 years. He was born on January 10, 1966. He is now, 48 years, almost the same age Obama assumed Presidency of United States.
However, three prominent Presidential aspirants of the party may be affected by this arrangement. These include former Head of State, General Muhammadu Buhari, he is 71 years old, having been born on December 17, 1942. Former Vice President, Atiku Abubakar, who is 67 years old, he was born on November 25, 1946 while Kano State governor, Rabiu Kwankwaso, who was born on October 21, 1942 is 67 years old.
Our source, who is very close to Tinubu informed Nigerian NewsDirect that record of achievements of some of the governors under the platform of the party who got their first term mandate while they were below 50 years also made the idea sellable to Tinubu.
Lagos State governor, Raji Fashola was 44 years when he became the governor of Lagos in 2007, Ekiti State governor, Kayode Fayemi was 45 years when he became governor of Ekiti in 2010 while Otunba Niyi Adebayo, APC National Vice Chairman (South-West) became governor of Ekiti State in 1999 at the age of 41 years.
Several APC members are however kicking against this plan. For instance, many supporters of Buhari especially in the North West and North East where he has large followers have vowed to resist any move that will bar the Katsina born Presidential election veteran from the 2015 poll “The idea of the merging of parties was mooted by Buhari, so he must not be shortchanged by those he invited,” one of his supporters said.
The Spokesperson of the defunct Congress for Progressive Change (CPC), Rotimi Fashakin denied knowledge of such arrangement, describing it as ‘sheer speculation which has no modicum of truth’. Buhari was the Presidential flag bearer of CPC in 2011 presidential election.
Also, it was gathered that former Vice President, Atiku had already set a machinery in motion in all the states of the Federation to boost his presidential chances. However, the latest move may hinder his chances and sources say he may finally return to Peoples Democratic Movement (PDM) which he had been controlling since the demise of late Shehu Musa Yar A’dua.
In the meantime, Tambuwal’s camp had been discreet about the turn of events. The Speaker was accused of having time to’ romance’ with the opposition but hardly present at events organized by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and Presidency. The Spokesman of Tambuwal, Imam Imam did not deny that his boss was contacted to fly the flag of APC in the presidential poll but argued that the party (APC) is in the best position to state the reasons his boss is being courted to be their candidate.
All efforts to get the response of Atiku’s spokesman, Mallam Shehu Garba were thwarted by poor telephone reception as his comments were not clearly heard and the text message he claimed that he sent because the lines were bad were not delivered as at the time of filing this story.
The Spokesman of Buhari, Alhaji Yau Darazo did not respond to text messages sent to his mobile phone and did not pick our correspondent’s calls.
Also there was no response to text messages and calls to the Publicity Secretary of APC Alhaji Lai Mohammed.
SOURCE: NIGERIA NEWS DIRECT