- The quest for the chairmanship seat of the APC is becoming dicier than envisaged in the build-up to the national convention of the party
- Coalition bodies of the party like CPC, ACN, and some former PDP members are still pitching their candidates ahead of the convention
- These permutations and strategies have left the party in a contentious state of selecting who will replace Adams Oshiomhole
FCT, Abuja - Conversations on the recent crisis rocking the All Progressives Congress (APC) over the chairmanship position of the party was top of the agenda of President Muhammadu Buhari's meeting with some of his trusted associates, a source told Legit.ng.
The meeting which was presided by the Minister of Justice and Attorney-General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami, the group of ministers met with President Buhari in London, where he was scheduled to undergo a routine medical checkup.
Others who accompanied Malami on the visit included a former member of the Federal House of Assembly, Hon. Faruq Adamu, the ministers of Education and Aviation, Mallam Adamu Adamu and Hadi Sirika respectively. The delegation is considered the most powerful of the Buhari's trusted allies.
Legit.ng understands that the center of conversation at the meeting borders on the incessant crisis within the APC over the forthcoming national convention slated for Saturday, March 26.
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It was gathered that the meeting held conversations of possible selection of candidates for the chairmanship seat of the ruling party.
The source informed this newspaper that the Buhari's kitchen cabinet had watched in utter bewilderment how different characters have continued to lay claim to having the President's ears with a view to manipulating the political process in their individual favors as against the collective interest of the bloc in the scheme of things.
The source said:
"At first, it was about the INEC’s letters and the possibility of losing all elective seats to the opposition if nothing is done to avert the impending political doom. They also talked about the legal implication of the Senate's rejection of the Electoral law amendments. But along the line, the discourse of the Chairman that will lead the party to the 2023 polls came up."
APC chairmanship: CPC quizzes Adamu as stakeholders reflect his PDP background
According to the source, one of the minster quizzed President Buhari if media reports confirming his endorsement of Senator Adamu were true.
At the meeting skepticism were raise over the political background of Senator Adamu who is widely regarded as one of the pioneers of APC's bitter rival PDP.
Adamu's history with the PDP dates back to the early days of the party as he is known to be one of the major pioneers of what turn out to be the largest political party in Africa.
Under the umbrella of PDP, Adamu was elected two-time governor of Nasarawa state and went on to be the secretary of the party's Board of Trustees (BOT).
Reacting to reports projecting Adamu as President Buhari's choice, one of the minister stated that presenting Adamu as favorite for the chairmanship seat will be an unfair decision considering the position of other party faithful who has been with the party from inception.
The source said:
"Mustapha for example had been with us since the days of the TBO (The Buhari Organization). He rose through the ranks to become the National Deputy Chairman of the defunct CPC. We know him, we know his capability and we can trust him enough to navigate the party through the stormy waters."
Almakura on the other hand was said to be the lone CPC Governor during this trying moment of the party.
The source said:
"He has not failed or floundered since then. So, how do you morally explain a purported endorsement of someone that we hardly know within our ranks?, someone that does not enjoy popular support?" the source asked rhetorically.
The source also revealed that delegations at the meeting suggested that bringing Senator Adamu to the fold might be consequential and detrimental to the progress of the APC, a decision that might affect the incumbent governor of Nasarawa state and the serving senator of the state.
The source said:
"There is no how Adamu, as the national chairman would give the duo of Sule and Almakura any breathing space in the party. He will naturally want to consolidate his political base, and that may mean the end to the 2nd term ambition of the Governor and the political career of Sen. Almakura."
Meanwhile, the ministers concluded that it will be beneficial for the caucus to back a member of the now rested Congress for Progressives Change (CPC) from where the President joined the APC in 2014.
According to another source, they opined that an Adamu Chairmanship may affect the interest of the caucus after Buhari's exit in 2023, saying that the influence of the President may not be capable of salvaging an unpalatable situation when out of office.
The source said:
"They expressed the fear that President Buhari, after office, may leave the political scene and they will be the one to be affected by the implications of the choice of a wrong Chairmanship candidate."
From all indications made available, 49-year-old Mustapha, a former deputy national chairman of the CPC and Senator Almakura looks primed for the chairmanship seat as major political heavyweight in APC are looking towards their direction.
However, uncertainties continues to trail the current situation of things in the party. It is expected that this meeting with the top dogs of the party will determine who will wield the staff of authority as the chosen party leader.
With few days to the national convention of the party, it is believed that President Buhari arrival from his medical trip will be a major determinant for the chairmanship position of the party.
Convention: Buhari Reportedly endorses former northern governor
Recall that Legit.ng reported that President Buhari had endorsed the former governor of Nasarawa state, Abdullahi Adamu.
In corroboration to this report, there have been strong speculations that the chairmanship seat will be zoned to the north-central region of the country.
This report further increased the potency of the endorsement of Adamu and other candidates who hail from the same region.
Convention: Don’t step down, Kwara APC charge Mustapha to intensify campaign
Similarly, another front-runner of the chairmanship seat of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Mallam Saliu Mustapha, has been urged not to step down his ambition for the party's apex seat.
Legit.ng reports that the Kwara state chapter of the party alongside other stakeholders made this call during a courtesy visit to Mustapha's residence in Ilorin over the weekend.
The entourage led by former speaker of the Kwara state House of Assembly, Hon Benjamin Yisa urged Mustapha to step up his campaign train as he is the best man for the party's apex seat.