2019: Buhari Gets Green Light From 24 Governors
Nigeria's President, Muhammadu Buhari, must be a happy man now, as the coast seems to have cleared for him ahead of anything that could be called primary election for the presidential ticket of the All Progressives Congress (APC).
This is because 24 governors of the ruling party has endorsed him for a second term in office, handing him the Presidential ticket on a platter.
Weather it is a gold platter or one fraught with resentments and acrimony from persons who may be eyeing the position, we will know in coming months.
His endorsement became official late on Tuesday after a meeting between him and some Progressive Governors led by Rochas Okorocha of Imo State.
It was a closed-door meeting held at the Presidential Villa, Abuja, but when it ended Governor Okorocha told reporters that the President had the support of all the governors.
President Buhari had at the last APC National Executive Committee meeting held on April 9, before he left for London, declared his intention to run for a second term in 2019.
"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, issues popping up ahead of the forthcoming convention and congresses of the political party were discussed in an attempt to make it hitch-free.
One of such issues facing the party with a double barrel effect is the choice of the next party chairman and Governor Okorocha said that 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.
"We also agreed that we will not allow the issue of many contestants to destroy our party."
One person that is being tipped for the position is a former Governor of Edo State, who was a radical labour union leader, and there were insinuations that his endorsement may have been finalised at the meeting, edging out, Mr John Oyegun.
The Imo State governor dismissed the assertion, but highlighted that the governors would soon make their stance known on the issue.
The “public will be duly briefed in due course," he said.
Another person that addressed reporters was the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Boss Mustapha.
He stressed that the new leadership of the APC from the ward, local government, state and the federal levels might emerge through consensus.
Also at the meeting were Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo and 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 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.