Published 17 September, 2022
Intense lobbying by various caucuses in the ruling All Progresive Congress, may be behind the naming of all members and positions in the Bola Tinubu-Kashim Shettima Presidential Campaign.
Unlike the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) that last week named its Campaign Council, the APC has only named its Director-General, Governor Simon Lalong of Plateau State; and some spokesmen including the Minister of State for Labour and Employment, Festus Keyamo (SAN); former Lagos Information Commissioner, Dele Alake; amongst others.
With barely 10 days to the commencement of campaigns by political parties fielding presidential and National Assembly candidates in next year’s general elections, stakeholders in the ruling party have intensified efforts to grab juicy positions for themselves or their allies.
Stakeholders, including serving and ex-ministers as well as some members of the National Working Committee (NWC), have floated individual support groups for Tinubu, which will have to be absolved into the main campaign council.
Speaking to Vanguard, a party source said: “In the NWC alone, the Woman Leader is coordinating several women groups, same for the Youth Leader. You have the Minister of State, FCT, Dr Ramatu Tijani Aliyu, who also coordinates a group.
“Then you have a former minister, Adebayo Shittu, with his own group. When you go across the states, you have some governors and other stakeholders setting up groups.
“At the end of the day, all these groups would be subsumed under the Campaign Council but you will need to create roles for their leaders. You need to give them such recognition.”
It was also gathered that the leadership of the APC and Tinubu are also taking into consideration geographical and religious balancing.
According to the publication, the battle between critical stakeholders at various state chapters of the party may also be playing a role in the delay in naming a Campaign Council.
There is reportedly a battle of supremacy in Kogi State, where the Governor of the State, Yahaya Bello, and the leader of the Tinubu Support Group and federal lawmaker, Hon. James Faleke, are battling for positions that will be given to the North-central state.
Also in Enugu, one of those who contested for the APC presidential ticket with Tinubu, former Senate President Ken Nnamani, is having a running battle with the state Chairman of the party and also the governorship candidate.
Speaking to Vanguard, Festus Keyamo, who is the Director, Media and Public Affairs and Official Spokesperson of the Campaign Council, said there was no cause for alarm, adding that the ruling still has time to finalize work on the composition of the Council.
“There are no issues as I understand it. The party’s leadership and the candidate are just making wide consultations and we still have a good number of days to go,” he stated.