By Chukwudi Nweje
All Progressives Congress (APC) presidential aspirant and leader of the Middlebelt Presidency agitations, Moses Ayom, has called for the review and reduction of the N100 billion fee for the nomination forms of the ruling party.
The aspirant said that in view of the harsh global economic realities, the ruling APC and the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) must not take decisions that could worsen the conditions of the people which government represents
He urged the Adamu-led NWC of the APC to reject the temptation of embracing what he termed as “commercial democracy “ as introduced and practised by the PDP.
The APC presidential aspirant said Nigerians were outraged and have condemned the N40 million charged by the PDP for presidential nomination form and that it will amount to double jeopardy for the ruling APC to support the same policy by even increasing the fee to N100 million.
Ayom, who had recently condemned the price for the purchase of the N21 million APC chairmanship nomination form raised an alarm about the plot to disenfranchise the people of the Middle Belt region by raising the presidential nomination form to an unaffordable level.
The business mogul called for prayers to guide the Senator Adamu-led National Working Committee to exhibit equity, fairness, and justice as their guiding principle and not do anything that will affect the already battered Middle Belt zone.
He said: “First, the new and re-branded Adamu-led National Working Committee of the APC must be seen to be in strict compliance with global finance and economy bearing in mind that the World is still crumbling and has not fully recovered from the Covid-19 damage. Indeed places like Shanghai are still battling with another lock down.
“The ongoing fierce UKRAINE/ RUSSIA war which is fast having a toll on the world Economy even more than the COVID are enough reasons for the Adamu led NWC to take a pause on and reduce the nomination fee drastically.”
Ayom said he will commence serious fasting and prayers to plead with God to change the minds of the APC to reduce the fee for the nomination form.
He said the the people of the Middlebelt who have been marginalized, oppressed, with their source of economic survival, agriculture destroyed, could not mobilise such money for the nomination form.
Ayom reminded the APC chairman of of his promise to run the party with a human face citing his known reputation for equity, justice and fairness.
He urged the Adamu-led NWC to use the powers just conferred on it by the party’s National Executive Committee (NEC) to reduce the prices of the nomination form for the presidency and other positions and cautioned added the confidence reposed in Adamu was what made the President and NEC to transfer their powers to the APC NWC for the crucial period of 90 days.
Ayom noted that the directive of President Muhammadu Buhari that the APC ticket should not be handed over to the highest bidder should be strictly complied with.
He said, Adamu, “as a bridge builder, must be seen to be building bridges and not cutting them by way of indirectly barring some of us by hiking the price of the presidential forms and others.”
“With the fixing of N100 million fee for the presidential nomination form, it is obvious that only the money bags would aspire while other potential good leaders have been blocked”, he said.
Ayom who expressed disappointment but said he respected the decision of the party further pleaded with the Adamu-led NWC to think twice about the high price of the forms especially as it affects the Middle Belt and most people across the country who were genuinely interested and have the knowledge of navigating this country out of the present situation.
“How do we reconcile the president’s directive that APC ticket should not be handed over to the highest bidder and then on the other hand the NWC have fixed the forms only for the highest bidder. There is something wrong somewhere.
“I accepted to run for the presidency because I believe I have the ideas , knowledge, expieriece, exposure and most importantly the capacity to uplift Nigeria in such a way that it could be ranked with the likes of China and the West in no distant time but unfortunately can’t afford the 100 million Naira bounty placed on the presidential form. I am asking my father, the chairman of APC in whom my son is named after to please use his influence to review and make the forms affordable to pave way for people with ideas such as Academicians, Journalists, civil servants and people that have requisite qualifications to also participate in the contest.”
Ayom, an international businessman man is the owner of the mining equipment firm GRANITE AND MARBLE which signed a $1.2 billion agreement in 2016 to establish a minimum equipment factory in Abuja.
The investment which is yet to take off because of some issues relating to ownership tussle, has the capacity of boosting the economy of the North because of the location of the investment in Abuja.
He said he had pleaded with President Muhammed Buhari, the president of the senate, Ahmed Lawan, and the speaker of House of Representatives for a political solution to help unbundle the 1.2 billion dollars investment that was signed in china along with Dangote’s $2.6 billion for fertilizer development as well as the $6 billion dollar currency swap that were signed in Beijing.
The Agreement, was witnessed by Mr Enalemen , the former minister of Trade and investments in the presence of the president and the CBN Governor, Godwin Emefiele.
It would be recalled that that late last year the association of Middle belt Bishops and the middle Belt Imams had visited Ayom and pleaded with him to come out and represent the middle belt by contesting for the 2023 presidency.
The South East and South South traditional rulers also visited Ayom and urged him to help the country by running for 2023 presidency and went further to decorate him with one of the highest Chieftaincy title, Ozo Igbo Ndu 1(The savior of the Igbo Race).