NewsNigeria ElectionsAPC South West Resolve To Produce Next President, South East Plead With Buhari

Leaders of the South-West geopolitical zone and presidential aspirants from the zone rose have resolved to produce the next president of Nigeria.

This is even as leaders of the South-East region pleaded with President Muhammadu Buhari to support the South-East to produce the next president of the country.

Vice  President Yemi Osinbajo,  national leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Bola Ahmed Tinubu; Ekiti State Governor, Kayode Fayemi, and Senator Ibikunle Amosun were the APC aspirants who attended the “APC presidential aspirants/stakeholders meeting” of the South West, held at State House, Marina.

Former interim national chairman of APC, Chief Bisi Akande and former governor of Ogun State, Aremo Olusegun Osoba, had called the meeting last week to meet presidential aspirants under the platform of the APC from South West.

Governors Gboyega Oyetola of Osun, Babajide Sanwo-Olu of Lagos, Dapo Abiodun of Ogun, and Rotimi Akeredolu of Ondo attended the meeting.

Other stakeholders at the meeting are APC national secretary, Iyiola Omisore; minister of Interior, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola; Speaker House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila; former governor of Ogun State, Otunba Gbenga Daniel, and minister of Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola.

Presidential aspirants that were absent at the meeting include Pastor Tunde Bakare and former Speaker House of Representatives, Dimeji Bankole.

The meeting which was held behind closed doors lasted for over two hours.

It was learnt that the presidential aspirants and the South West leaders agreed that the zone must insist on the office of the president and also resolved that the aspirants must work towards actualizing the South-West presidency in 2023, even if it means other aspirants stepping down for the popular candidate at the APC presidential primary on May 30.

The pioneer interim national chairman of the APC and former governor of Osun State, Chief Akande who confirmed the development, said the South West is united and has resolved to produce the next president in the 2023 general polls.

Akande who made this known at the end of the meeting last night said, “The stakeholders had a fruitful, mutual deliberation. We are united as we will ensure that the presidency of the Federal Republic of Nigeria will come to South. We also resolved that everybody should maintain absolute decorum.  Thank you, no questions.”

Meanwhile leaders of the South East region yesterday pleaded with President Muhammadu Buhari to support the South East to produce the next president of the country.

Presenting the request to the president, Ebonyi State governor, and chairman South-East Governor’s Forum, David Umahi, called for fairness and equity in the power rotation arrangement in the country.

“On the request for the presidency of the South East, I’m an aspirant and would not be able to say much about that.

“But let me say something to Nigerians; if the basis for asking for the presidency to be rotated from the North to the South is on the basis of equity, fairness and justice, and our brothers from South-South and South -West are putting more candidates than South East, then the question is where is the fairness?”

“Where is the morality, where is the equity? But we must honestly thank the leaders of the Middle Belt and Chief Adebanjo of South West and Chief Edwin Clark, and other leaders of these two zones who have been advocating for power rotation from North to south East, South-South and South West.

 “South-East is political ally to the North until 1999 and when the entire North lined up behind Ekwueme for the presidency, but because of June 12, because of political dialogue we allowed and voted for Obasanjo in South West. The North gave ticket to Dr.  Ogbonnaya Onu and because of June 12 it was handed over to Olu Falaye.”

Umahi stated that the South East zone has made sacrifices for the entire Nigeria for the peace and stability of the country, adding that when it is the turn of the South East, “rightly or wrongly we should be considered for the peace and justice and stability of Nigeria.”

“And let me say that all those angling for one position or the other can only have it if there is Nigeria and Mr. President has been fighting for the unity and stability of Nigeria.

“That is why irrespective of political lineage you have treated us equally and so I want the elite to put patriotism of the nation ahead of every one of our aspirations.”

Governor Umahi stated that if equity, Justice and fairness must be the yardstick, the South East will need support, but if not it will be difficult for the South East to be shortchanged and continue to vote for those who will not vote for us.”

Hassan Umar Shallpella (Regional Correspondent)

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