Former Governor of Abia State, Orji Uzor Kalu has said President Muhammadu Buhari is not seeking for an automatic ticket in 2019.

Kalu spoke on Saturday in the wake of comments credited to the national leader of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), Bola Tinubu who said the party had no automatic ticket for the President.

According to Kalu, Buhari would not want an automatic ticket for 2019 because he would want other interested candidates to explore the democratic process to test their popularity.

Kalu, who made this known to newsmen at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos, said President Buhari as a democrat would want every interested candidate to be given a chance to test his popularity and exercise his democratic right.

“Buhari himself is not even looking for automatic ticket. Buhari is a man that is very fair and free to what he does. And his feeling is that if any candidate is willing to contest against him, he should come to the Eagle Square.

“Some schools of thought are saying ‘no, if in the United States, Obama was given automatic ticket; President Bush in Republican Party was given automatic ticket; President Clinton was given automatic ticket; the First and Second Bush were given automatic tickets; so President Buhari is also feeling that automatic ticket for him is not right. He said open the space for other people who also want to contest. He wants the openness of the primary to take place,” Kalu said.

He also added, “The contest should be thrown open. There would be no rancour. We are in democracy and I would vote for the President. I’ve said it times without number that the President needs to consolidate on his achievements because the President is very popular. He is still the only person carrying 12 million votes in his back. His tenure has been besieged by illness. So the President genuinely deserves second tenure.

He said APC is not afraid of anybody who wants to contest against the President, insisting that PDP would not bounce back.

According to him, the international community was outraged by the massive looting of the nation’s treasury by PDP, adding that it would amount to the greatest disservice to call for the return of PDP.

“How can they bounce back when treasury was looted? How can they bounce back when the international community doesn’t see anything good in them? How can they bounce back when we gave them our treasury, they opened and looted it?

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