You are good to go: APC Govs endorse Buhari; Oyegun, Oshiomhole fight dirty
All the 24 governors elected on the platform of the ruling All Progressive Congress(APC) on Tuesday announced their endorsement of President Muhammadu Buhari’s candidature for the 2019 presidential election.
Gov. Rochas Okorocha of Imo made the position of the governors known to State House correspondents after a closed door meeting with the President at the Presidential villa, Abuja.
Okorocha, told the correspondents that they communicated their support for the President’s reelection bid at the meeting.
“We came to welcome him back and to commend him for his boldness and courage to declare his intention to run for second term as President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, which we the 24 governors of the APC duly support.
“And we have come to encourage him that he must go ahead with his vision to rescue Nigeria from its present challenges,’’ he said.
According to him, the meeting also addressed the issue of the forthcoming convention and congresses in order to make it hitch-free.
He said the president and governors had resolved to produce a strong party chairman that could deliver tangible results for the party in the forthcoming general election.
He added that “we also agreed that we will not allow the issue of many contestants to destroy our party.’’
The governor, who is also the Chairman of APC Governors’ Forum, dismissed the assertion that the meeting was convened to endorse former governor of Edo, Adams Oshiomhole as next APC National Chairman.
He, however, disclosed that the governors would soon make their stance known on the subject matter, adding that the “public will be duly briefed in due course.
The Secretary to the Government of the Federation, who was part of the meeting, also disclosed that new leadership of the APC from the ward, local government, state and the federal levels might emerge through consensus.
Those who attended the meeting included Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo, the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Mr Boss Mustapha as well as the Chief of Staff to the President, Abba Kyari.
APC state governors in attendance were; Nasir El-Rufai of Kaduna state, Yahaya Bello of Kogi, Simon Lalung of Plateau, Jubrila Bindow of Adamawa and Abdulaziz Yari of Zamfara. Others were Rochas Okorocha of Imo, Abdulahi Ganduje of Kano, Kashim Shettima of Borno, Abubakar Sani Bello of Niger, Tanko Almakura of Nassarawa, Abiola Ajimobi of Oyo, Ibikunle Amosun of Ogun, Godwin Obaseki of Edo and Abubakar Badaru of Jigawa.
Meanwhile, Chief John Odigie-Oyegun, All Progressives Congress (APC) National Chairman and Adams Oshiomhole another combatant for the chairmanship of the party are fighting dirty. Both camps have been engaged in war of words and clandestine lobby to win the big position. Oyegun is being demarketed by the Oshiomhole camp as jaded and ineffectual.
On Tuesday, Oyegun described as ´´absolutely childish´´ the endorsement of the immediate past governor of Edo, Adams Oshiomhole by South-South stakeholders of the party to take over from him.
He made this known to newsmen at the party´s National Secretariat in Abuja.
´´It was childish, absolutely childish. Voting is done at convention and not in State Houses or in Government Houses,” he said.
Odigie-Oyegun, who did not confirm if he would seek re-election as APC national chairman or not, however, said he had concluded consultations and would make his decision public in a few days.
´´The consultation, I think is concluded; I’m going to make it known when the convention committee announces their programmes.
´´Then when I am going to buy a form, if I will re-contest I will let you know,´´ he said.
There have been speculations that both Odigie-Oyegun and Oshiomhole among others are in the race for the APC national chairmanship position.
The Forum of South-South APC Stakeholders held a meeting in Benin on Monday where some states in the region endorsed the candidacy of Oshiomhole while others declined.
Odigie-Oyegun, however, said those who endorsed Oshiomhole had their reasons which should be respected, saying that there was nothing wrong in the endorsement.
He, however, said that he was not bothered by the development.
´´I will grant a comprehensive interview to you when the time comes.
´´One of those who wants my job is from Edo and he was the immediate past governor and he was very instrumental in installing the present governor.
´´So, I think it is a case of rub my back, I rub your back’ that is playing out;´´ he said, adding that he was not bothered by the development,´´ Odigie-Oyegun said.