Northern APC Governors drop Lawan, backs power shift to South


Ten Northern governors elected on the platform of the All Progressives Congress, APC, has asked President Muhammadu Buhari to pick a Southerner as his successor.

The governors and other leaders from the North in a statement issued on Saturday after an extensive meeting urged Buhari to pick one of the 19 aspirants from the South as the flagbearer of the party.

The main opposition Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, recently elected former Vice President Atiku Abubakar from Adamawa as its flagbearer for the general election.

The ten northern APC governors rooting for a power shift to the South are Babagana Zulum of Borno, Simeon Lalong of Plateau, Nasir El-Rufai of Kaduna and Abdullahi Ganduje of Kano. Others are Aminu Masari of Katsina, Abubakar Bello of Niger, Senator Atiku Bagudu of Kebbi, Muhammad Yahaya from Gombe, Abdullahi Sule of Nasarawa and Bello Matawalle of Zamfara. Former governor of Sokoto, Senator Aliyu Wamakko also signed the statement.

They argued that the APC has a duty to ensure that the 2023 elections offer a nation-building moment, that reaffirm that a democratic pathway to power exists for all who value cooperation and build national platforms.

“We therefore wish to strongly recommend to President Muhammadu Buhari that the search for a successor as the APC’s presidential candidate be limited to our compatriots from the southern states. We appeal to all aspirants from the northern states to withdraw in the national interest and allow only the aspirants from the south to proceed to the primaries. We are delighted by the decision of our esteemed colleague, His Excellency, Governor Abubakar Badaru to contribute to this patriotic quest by withdrawing his presidential aspiration,” they said.

They added that the choice of APC presidential candidate should not be influenced by another political party.

Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, APC national leader, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, former Speaker of House of Representatives, Dimeji Bankole, Chairman of Nigerian Governors’ Forum and Ekiti state governor, Kayode Fayemi as well as former Ogun state governor, Senator Ibikunle Amosun, Senator representing Ondo North Senatorial district, Robert Ajayi Boroffice and Serving Overseer of the Citadel Global Community Church, Nigeria, Pastor Tunde Bakare are the presidential aspirants from the South West.

Former Minister of State for Education, Chief Emeka Nwajiuba, Mrs Uju Ken-Ohanenye, Mr Nicholas Felix, Governor David Umahi (Ebonyi), Senator Ken Nnamani, Senator Rochas Okorocha, Dr Ogbonnaya Onu and Mr. Ikeobasi Mokelu are from the South East

Chief Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi, Senator Godswill Akpabio, Mr. Tein Jack-Rich and Governor Ben Ayade (Cross River) are from the South South.

The party will nominate its presidential candidate at its National Convention in Abuja next week.