- For northern elders, Atiku Abubakar is not the man to lead the north and the PDP in the 2023 presidential battle with other parties
- The elders on Friday, April 22, chose Governor Bala Mohammed and former Senate President Bukola Saraki as the best candidates for the PDP
- A report by the elders' committee on the choice made has also been received and approved by a former military head of state, Ibrahim Badamasi Babangida
Minna, Niger - Governor Bala Mohammed of Bauchi and former Senate President Bukola Saraki have been chosen by northern elders in the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) as the candidates for the 2023 presidency.
Professor Ango Abdullahi, the head of the committee which screened the aspirants from the region, noted that the process that produce Mohammed and Saraki was rigorous, Daily Trust reports.
Abdullahi told journalists in Minna, Niger state capital, on Friday, April 22, that former military head of state, Ibrahim Badamasi Babangida, received and approved a report submitted to him by the committee on the elders' choice.
In his advice to the Bauchi governor and the former Senate boss, Abdullahi noted that they should both work together and decide on which of them will represent the north in the PDP.
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“For the purpose of this exercise, it is hereby resolved that Governor Bala Mohammed from the North-East and former Senate President Bukola Saraki from the North-Central be presented as the northern consensus candidates for the moment.
“The successful aspirants are hereby urged to work together to make allowance for further consultations to foster understanding among themselves and the PDP community to ensure a rancour-free primary in which all eligible candidates would be free to exercise their right.”
A report by Punch quoted Mohammed as saying that he and Saraki will meet and conclude on who will emerge between them.
The governor, according to the publication, said:
“We have reached an agreement to seek consensus so that we can close rank and build unity for the North and Nigeria.
"We are happy that after due process and due consultation, involving the PDP Northern Elders Forum, I and Saraki have been chosen as the northern consensus candidates. We will go ahead and consult more among ourselves and bring out one candidate.”
2023: Consensus candidacy best for PDP’s unity, says Saraki
Meanwhile, Saraki had said PDP presidential hopefuls from the north were working for a consensus candidate to foster desired unity in the country.
Saraki disclosed this in Delta state on Monday, April 4 when he led other aspirants, on a consultative visit to Governor Ifeanyi Okowa at Government House, Asaba.
The delegation included Governor Aminu Tambuwal of Sokoto, Bala Mohammed of Bauchi, and former Managing Director of FSB International Bank Plc, Alhaji Mohammad Hayatu-Deen.