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Tinubu, Osinbajo, Fayemi, Akande, others: S’West resolved to produce next president

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Tinubu, Osinbajo, Fayemi, Akande, others: S’West resolved to produce next president.

All Progressives Congress (APC) leaders and presidential aspirants from the South West emerged from a meeting in Lagos last night with a resolution to ensure that the geo-political zone produces Nigeria’s next president in 2023.

They also affirmed the right of every one of the contenders to pursue his ambition, but advised the gladiators to eschew acrimony and abuse in the build-up to this month’s primaries.

By the close of work at the party’s national secretariat in Abuja yesterday, the number of APC’s presidential aspirants had risen to 22 after Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) governor Godwin Emefiele, former House of Representatives Speaker Dimeji Lawal, immediate past Ogun State Governor Ibikunle Amosun, Science, Technology and Innovation Minister Ogbonnaya Onu, former Zamfara State Governor Sani Yerima and Senator Ajayi Boroffice bought their own expression of interest and nomination forms.

Each set of forms goes for N100 million.

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Many of the aspirants purchased the forms through proxies.

It was gathered yesterday that more aspirants might join the queue in due course.

Yesterday’s meeting of APC South West leaders was convened by former Osun State Governor Bisi Akande and his Ogun counterpart Aremo Olusegun Osoba to douse the anxiety generated by the growing number of aspirants from the same political family and background.

In attendance were APC National Leader Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, Senator Ibikunle Amosu, and Ekiti State Governor Kayode Fayemi, all of who have purchased their expression of interest and nomination forms for the presidential primaries.

The meeting, which took place at the Lagos State House, Marina, also attracted House of Representatives Speaker Femi Gbajabiamila, APC National Secretary Senator Iyiola Omisore, Southwest APC leader Isaacs Kekemeke, Lagos State Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu and his Ondo, Ogun and Osun counterparts Rotimi Akeredolu, Dapo Abiodun, and Gboyega Oyetola.

Others were Interior Minister Rauf Aregbesola, his Trade and Investment counterpart Otunba Niyi Adebayo, Works and Housing Minister Babatunde Fashola, former Ogun State Governor Gbenga Daniel and former Oyo State deputy governors Iyiola Oladokun and Alake Adeyemo.

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A source close to the conveners said the meeting was successful.

He said: “They (aspirants) freely expressed themselves. They spoke their minds. It was agreed that they were free to pursue their ambitions. But the leaders emphasised the commitment to the emergence of the next APC presidential candidate from the Southwest.”

The source added: “The aspirants were admonished to pursue their legitimate interests without abusing one another. They called for decorum.

“It was also agreed that the aspirants should meet regularly to review events and situations. Contrary to feelings in some places, the meeting was not convened to make aspirants withdraw from the race.”

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Jubrin’s exit, no cause for alarm – group

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Jubrin’s exit, no cause for alarm – group.

Tinubu Vanguard, a political support group, says the exit of Mr Abdulmumin Jubrin from the All Progressives Congress (APC) poses no threat to its mandate.

The Director-General (D-G) of Tinubu Vanguard, Dr Johnny Benjamin, in a statement on Sunday, said Jubrin’s decision to quit the APC was personal and should be respected.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Tinubu Vanguard is a support group for the presidential ambition of APC National Leader, Bola Tinubu.

Jubrin, who is the D-G of the Bola Ahmed Tinubu Support Groups Management Council (BATSGMC), had on Saturday, announced his decision to quit the APC.

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He cited irreconcilable differences within the APC in his home state of Kano as reason for his decision.

According to Benjamin, Jubrin has the right to decide which political party is best for him to pursue his ambition.

“We call on the leadership and members of all support groups to remain calm.

“Tinubu is committed to the project of repositioning Nigeria and we are determined to ensure that he gets the opportunity to do so by delivering victory at the polls.

“We call on him to urgently address pending issues within the support groups to enable us work effectively towards achieving success in the party primaries and the general elections,” he said. (NAN)

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PDP fixes May 9 for North West Zonal Congress

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PDP fixes May 9 for North West Zonal Congress.

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has fixed May 9 for the conduct of the party’s North West Zonal Congress to elect Zonal Executive Officers and National Ex-Officio members of the party in the North West Zone.

The party announced this in a statement by its National Publicity Secretary, Mr Debo Ologunagba, in Abuja on Saturday night.

Ologunagba said that the National Working Committee (NWC) of the party approved the conduct of the congress at the Zonal Headquarters of the party in Kaduna, Kaduna State.

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“The NWC requests all leaders, critical stakeholders and teeming members of our party in the North-West to be guided accordingly for a smooth and hitch-free exercise.

“The exercise will be conducted in line with the Constitution and Guidelines of our great party, and in adherence to the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) Protocol on COVID-19,” he said.

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2023: Battle of the titans for Senate seats in Imo

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2023: Battle of the titans for Senate seats in Imo.

The campaign for 2023 general elections is gathering momentum in Imo State. Interested political heavyweights and lightweights who want to represent their respective senatorial districts have been engaging stakeholders at the party levels. Aspirants for various elective positions have started marketing themselves to their people through presentation of their credentials and manifestoes. They are also talking to stakeholders to convince on why they should represent them for elective positions.

In Imo State, many of such political gladiators have lined up for the race to the Senate in 2023, polishing their images and updating their credentials for the race. Apart from some new entrants, a couple of the incumbents also want to go back in 2023. Talks about the need to represent them since they would be ranking members and possibly principal officers are now rife.

It is pertinent in this brief to present some of those who are getting ready to seek for nominations from their various political parties to serve their respective senatorial districts in Imo State come 2023.

He is the incumbent senator representing Imo East, otherwise known as Owerri zone in the red chamber. Onyewuchi, before his election into the senate in 2019, was a ranking member of the House of Representatives, having represented Owerri federal constituency for two terms (2011 and 2015). He is armed with experience, effectiveness and above all, the only member that would have the opportunity to grab a principal position if he goes back. However, political observers say he has not shown enough achievements to justify his retention of the seat. He is running on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

Betty Anyanwu-Akeredolu

Wife of the Ondo State governor and aspirant for the Imo East Senatorial District seat at the National Assembly, Chief Mrs. Betty Anyanwu-Akeredolu possesses the wherewithal to successfully run the race. Akeredolu who is the only woman for the race in the whole of the three zones of Imo State, has the requisite education, mental and physical capacity as well as exposure to provide effective representation to her people. She is a chieftain of the All Progressives Congress (APC).

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Akeredolu focus is on the infrastructural deficit and haphazard planning of towns in the Imo East Senatorial District particularly the Emeabiam, Ihiagwa and Nekede axis who hosts two federal tertiary educational institutions namely Federal Polytechnic, Nekede and Federal University of Technology. Already she has kicked off by deploying her contact for the commencement of the reconstruction of the 10.5km Emeabiam-Eziobodo road being undertaken by the Nigerian Delta Development Commission, (NDDC) at the sum of N1.6billion.

She has also embarked on intervention in many areas such as girl children and women empowerment (with special interest in widows) and creation of awareness, care and treatment of persons afflicted with breast cancer. The odd favours her to pick the APC ticket.

Hon. Uche Onyeagocha

When it comes to outspokenness and vibrancy, Hon. Uche Onyeagocha has the oratory power to stand above his peers contesting the position. A former member of the House of Representatives, the PDP chieftain has the record of being the first All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) legislator in the Green Chambers. Onyeagocha had contested several elective positions including governorship in the past until he was appointment as the Secretary to the State Government under the Rt. Hon. Emeka Ihedioha’s short-lived administration. He has to brace up because many politicians have their eyes on that seat.

Chief Basil Maduka 

Another PDP aspirant, Chief Basil Maduka is relatively an unknown figure in Imo State politics. He could be described as a green horn. However, from the abridged curriculum vitae, Maduka seems to possess the requisite credentials that would give him an edge. He is a businessman and people believe he will attract business into politics with his contacts.

Prince Alex Mbata

Prince Alex Mbata otherwise called PAM is a game changer in Imo politics especially the Owerri zone. Initially he was rumoured to be warming up for governorship until he cleared the air that his mission in the state was to join hands with the State Governor, Senator Hope Uzodimma to bring the desired security and development to the state. Recently he had an empowerment programme where about 3000 indigent people of Owerri zone were given equipment to start up business through his PAM Humanitarian Foundation. He is force in the game. He is an APC member.

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Chief Jerry Chukwueke

Another APC aspirant, Jerry Chukwueke, is a renowned Lagos-based businessman who has at one time or the other contested the governorship of the State. He has also gun for the president in 2019 presidential election where he was a running mate to the APGA presidential candidate. His aspiration this time around to become the Senator for Owerri zone under the All Progressives Congress (APC), might create an upset for his opponents. But some people feel he may surrender before the battle ends as he is a mobile politician.

Hon. Jones Onyerieri 

Also a PDP chieftain, Onyerieri was a two term House of Representatives that represented Nwangele/ Nkwere/ Isu/Njaba federal constituency. He contested the 2019 senatorial election with incumbent Senator Rochas Okorocha, who he accused of forcing the INEC returning officer at gunpoint to announce the result in his favour. He claimed to have won that election. His experience stands him out.

Hon. ThankGod Ezeani

Hon. ThankGod Ezeani is a one-time member of the House of Representatives, he has experience of legislative job. He has the capacity to represent the zone in the Senate. Pundits believe he has what it takes to be an effective senator for his people.

Hon. Jerry Alagboso

A former controller of customs as well as a ranking member of the House of Representatives, Hon. Jerry Alagboso remains a solid politician to beat. He has the contact, experience and financial muscle to work his way to the Senate. However, he has to work extra hard to beat other contenders as they are equally not pushovers. He is of the PDP.

The choice is now for the party leaders and members to pick and present aspirants who would represent the parties at the election for the electorate to make their choices.

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