From Fred Ezeh, Abuja
Nasarawa State Governor Abdullahi Sule has thrown his support behind the aspiration of his predecessor, Tanko Al-Makura, to vie for the seat of the National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the forthcoming national convention of the party.
The governor disclosed that he has commenced underground works, particularly lobbying his colleagues in the party, as well as governors to ensure the position is zoned to the north and Nasarawa state in particular considering the role the state had played in the formation and victory of the party since 2015.
He, thus, confirmed that he will double his support for his predecessor’s aspirations if he successfully secure the support of the party to zone the position in their favour.
A statement from APC Support Groups for Al-Makura, a group championing the campaign, indicated that the Governor pledged his support at a meeting with the National Committee of the group in Nasarawa.
The governor said the aspirations of his predecessor is a justified one and should be supported by all members of the party for the sake of equity, justice and fairness.
He said that though, the choice of selecting who heads the party is squarely on the party members not few individuals, but he will continue to lobby all the key stakeholders in the party to support Nasarawa state’s quest for the next Chairmanship of APC.
He argued that zoning the position to Nasarawa was justified, fair and equitable, given the role that the state played as the only Congress for Progressive Change (CPC) state that was involved at the formative stage of the APC.
He said Nasarawa deserved to be compensated for helping to midwife the birth of the APC, with the brinkmanship of his former boss, Tanko Al-Makura.
The governor pledged to increase his support for the group as soon as the zoning has been done in favour of Nasarawa State.
He commended the group’s resolve to promote his former boss for the APC National Chairmanship and urged them to proceed with caution, until the position is finally zoned to the North Central, particularly, Nasarawa State.
Meanwhile, the National Chairman of the group, Nonso David Ezedimma, in his remarks thanked the governor for the support, assuring him that the group will go all way out, constitutionally, to ensure the emergence of Al-Makura as APC National Chairman.
Ezedimma had told journalists few days ago during a press conference in Abuja, that CPC bloc in APC was determined in its pursuit for opportunity to produce the next national chairman of APC.
He referred to that fact that other political parties that jointly formed the APC have taken their turn in the national chairmanship position except CPC, hence their demand to be allowed to produce the next national chairman through its choice candidate, Tanko Al-Makura.
He said CPC bloc hasn’t been treated fairly in the leadership of APC which it played key role in its formation, thus stating that it will be fair and just for one of its own, Al-Makura, to be anointed as consensus candidate for the position of the national chairman of APC.
He made reference to past National Chairmen of the party, notably, Chief Bisi Akande, Chief John Odigie-Oyegun and Comrade Adams Oshiomole, stating that none came from the CPC bloc.
He said: “Our choice candidate, Senator Al-Makura, is a consummate Buharist right from the days of defunct CPC. The merger arrangements that produced the APC, was midwifed by Al-Makura, then, as the only CPC Governor, alongside other leaders, who went into negotiation table with other political parties like the ACN, ANPP and APGA, that gave birth to APC.
“As one of the founding fathers of APC, Al-Makura, no doubt understand the principles upon which the party was found, and has the capacity to effectively manage its affairs.
“Undoubtedly, APC needs someone with experience, network, brinkmanship and pedigree, to navigate the very delicate political climate that currently envelopes the party.
“This is the time for APC to exercise great discretion in the choice of its next leaders, especially the National Chairman, as it prepare to face the challenges of the post- Buhari Presidency.”
He maintained that, for APC to survive and retain the Presidency in 2023, Al-Makura, the former governor of Nasarawa State, is what APC needs to guarantee its future and survival as a strong political party, after President Muhammadu Buhari lives office in 2023.