2019: South West APC Says No Automatic Ticket For Buhari
Leaders of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the South-west say the party’s 2019 presidential ticket is open to all members.
Former Interim Chairman, APC, Bisi Akande who stated the group’s position at the South West APC meeting held in Ibadan, on Thursday, said President Buhari is yet to inform the party of his intention to vie for re-election.
In attendance were the host governor, Abiola Ajimobi, Akinwunmi Ambode (Lagos), Rauf Aregbesola (Osun), Ibikunle Amosun (Ogun), Rotimi Akeredolu (Ondo).
Others were former governors Adebayo Alao-Akala (Oyo), Olagunsoye Oyinlola (Osun), Olusegun Osoba (Ogun), Adeniyi Adebayo (Ekiti), Kayode Fayemi (Ekiti), who is serving as Minister for Solid Minerals, Communications Minister, Adebayo Shittu, a Minister of State for Niger Delta, Claudius Daramola, Senator Adeyeye, Deputy Speaker House of Representatives, Lasun Yusuf and the Majority Leader, Femi Gbajabiamila.
The party's National Leader, Senator Bola Tinubu, who was billed to attend the meeting reportedly shelved the decision at the last minute “because of stomach ache,” according to Akande.
Akande said they were in Ibadan as a follow up to the January meeting they held in the same town, to appraise the state of affairs of the party and how the zone was fairing in the scheme of things.
"We are happy that our governors and ministers are performing satisfactorily. As a party, we are trying to review our position to see what we are going to do to have Ekiti back for APC in 2018,” he said.
Asked of the position of the party on President Buhari's rumoured second term ambition, Akande said, "He has not told us he is running for 2019. Anybody in our party is free to become the president of Nigeria as long as he indicates interest.
“We have a process through which a candidate will be selected. If he is lucky to have the ticket, then we have no option than to present him as our candidate," he said.
On the clamour for restructuring, Akande said, "Restructuring is not our language. Go and ask those who are advocating for restructuring to define it. What I told you just now is devolution of function from the centre to the state and to the local government,” he said
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