Saturday, 07 May 2022 06:35

Southwest APC presidential aspirants meet in Lagos, fail to agree on consensus candidate

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Leaders of the All Progressives Congress in the Southwest, on Friday, cautioned presidential aspirants from the zone to guard against their utterances.

It was gathered that the meeting, held behind closed doors at the Lagos House, Marina, also resolved that name calling and other personal attacks should not be encouraged by the aspirants and their supporters.

It was learnt that the aspirants were asked to work with whomever among them emerges as the party’s candidate for the presidential election.

According to sources, the leaders also impressed the aspirants to ensure that the Southwest does not lose the opportunity to produce the President in 2023.

A source at the meeting said, “The issue of betrayal was put to rest as the elders affirmed that everyone who desired to run for any political office whatsoever was not encumbered in any way at all.”

It was gathered that the meeting did not agree on the issue of consensus.

A source, who was at the meeting, said the issue was also not listed as part of its agenda, but that it was stylishly introduced by one of the leaders.

He said one of the speakers asked if the aspirants from the zone could still step down for one another if they realised that the zone would be defeated at the party’s presidential primary slated for the end of the month.

But he said none of the aspirants in attendance responded as they were not ready to step down for the other.

The source stated, “How do you ask someone who has paid N100m to step down? Step down for who? All the aspirants believe that they are popular and can win.

“The issue of consensus was not listed in the agenda of the meeting. It was also not part of the text messages sent to us for the meeting. The meeting was majorly concerned about the utterances that are already portraying us as being divided and that the zone is behaving as if we have no leaders.

“Yet, there are concerns that the large number of aspirants could put the zone in danger if we go into the primary like that. But nobody was asked to step down for the other.”

The meeting was convened by the former interim National Chairman of the APC, Bisi Akande, and a former governor of Ogun State, Segun Osoba.

Present at the meeting were the Vice-President, Yemi Osinbajo; a former Lagos State governor, Bola Tinubu; and Ekiti State Governor Kayode Fayemi.

Also at the meeting were the Minister of Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola; Speaker of the House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila; Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Niyi Adebayo; governors Rotimi Akeredolu of Ondo, Dapo Abiodun of Ogun and Oyetola of Osun states.

Others include Minister of Interior, Rauf Aregbesola; APC National Secretary, Iyiola Omisore; a former governor of Ogun State, Gbenga Daniel; a former Deputy Governor of Oyo State, Moses Adeyemo; and a former National Vice Chairman of the APC, South-West Zone, Pius Akinyelure.

However, two presidential aspirants from the Southwest, Tunde Bakare, and a former Speaker of the House of Representatives, Dimeji Bankole; and the Deputy Majority Leader of the Senate, Ajayi Boroffice, who have all purchased forms, were absent at the meeting.

 

Punch


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