BusinessDay

Adamu absent as APC governors, NWC hold crucial meeting

...may chose consensus presidential candidate

The governors elected on the platform of the All Progressives Congress and members of the party’s National Working Committee (NWC) Monday night held a crucial meeting ahead of the presidential primary election holding Tuesday.

The APC governors led by their chairman and governor of Kebbi state, Abubakar Atiku-Bagudu met behind closed door at the NEC Hall of the party’s national secretariat, Abuja.

Abdullahi Adamu, APC national chairman was not at the meeting which was presided over by Abubakar Kyari, deputy national chairman north.

There were indications that the governors and NWC who are bittered by moves of the national chairman to foist Ahmad Lawan, President of the Senate as the party’s presidential candidate would chose a consensus flagbearer at the meeting.

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It emerged on Monday that Adamu, contrary to the resolution of Northern APC Governors and leaders that power should shift to the South, told the NWC in the afternoon that Lawan from north-east was the party’s consesus candidate for the 2023 presidency.

He told the NWC members that he arrived at the choice of the Senate President after consultation with President Muhamadu Buhari.

But, Buhari at a meeting with northern APC governors denied “having an anointed candidate”.

A statement by Garba Shehu, senior special assistant to the president on media and publicity, revealed that President Muhammadu Buhari, has cleared all doubts about where he stands on the choice of a presidential candidate for the governing All Progressives Congress (APC).

The President declared before the party’s 13 APC’s governors of northern states, that he has “no preferred candidate,” and has “anointed no one,” and is determined to ensure that “there shall be no imposition of any candidate on the party.”

Similarly, NWC also distanced itself from the purported adoption of Lawan as the party’s presidential candidate.

Sulaiman Argungu, APC national organising secretary who journalists at the party’s national secretariat in the company of other NWC members, Argungu said Adamu’s position is contrary to the the party’s stance, which is power shift to the South.

Argungu said: “Our national chairman, distinguished senator Abdullahi Adamu did briefed us that the Senate President, Lawan is the consensus candidate for the APC national convention and that is just for the information he gave us. But it is not an issue that has been discussed on the floor of the NWC.

“Just recently, about two days ago, the northern governors held a meeting that the leadership of this country, under the leadership of the All Progressive Congress should go to the north and equally, the southern governors also affirmed that. So we as members of the NWC are also with the governors on what they have said.

“Is an information and all of us are entitled to our opinion, we are all democrats and we are can exercise whatever. This decision was never taken by the NWC, but an information given to the NWC. It has never been deliberated.”

While the governors turned down requests to brief journalists on the outcome of meeting, Kyari after being prevailed on, simply said the discussion “continues” and “consensus” was still possible.

BusinessDay learnt that the meeting will continue at the Aso Rock villa residence of Adamu who was held up in traffic gridlock and could not reached the secretariat for the meeting.

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