The ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) will hold its presidential primary today at the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja. The party’s delegates, leaders as well as observers will converge on Eagle Square to elect their flagbearer.
The winner will challenge candidates of some other parties such as Atiku Abubakar of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and Peter Obi of the Labour Party. Ahmad Lawan A total of 18 parties are eligible to present candidates for the presidential poll that will be held early next year The APC presidential screening committee had screened 23 aspirants and advised 10 of them to withdraw, though they would be allowed to contest if they insist.
The chairman of the screening committee, John Odigie-Oyegun, while submitting its report to the National Chairman of the party, Abdullahi Adamu, on Friday, said 13 others have been shortlisted for the shadow election. Mr Oyegun said 22 aspirants out of the 23 screened said they would accept a consensus arrangement, but one aspirant rejected it.
Governors and other key stakeholders in the party had taken queues behind different candidates battling for the party’s ticket. Chieftains such as former governors, ministers and party flag bearers are the ones calling the shot. Most of the 23 aspirants had travelled to states to meet with party leaders and delegates to canvass for their votes. Most travelled among the aspirants are vice President Yemi Osinbajo, Tinubu, former Rivers governor, Rotimi Amaechi and Senate President Ahmad Lawan.
But beyond the moves to convince the delegates, old alliances and relationships are said to be playing significant roles in determining where the party leaders pitch their tents. The latest development is that the Senate President, Ahmad Lawan, has the support of the cabals in the presidency, National Chairman of the party, 7 other presidential aspirants behind him including top chieftains of the party like the Chief Whip of the Senate, Senator Orji Uzor Kalu. Lawan is tipped to win in 24 States of the federation judging by the analysis released by Integrity Monitoring Group (IMG)
Before yesterday, Tinubu had the support of some Northern Governors backing his ambition, most of them were said to be supporting him because they were allegely promised vice presidential ticket. It was learnt that most of these Northern Governors are now backing the preferred candidate of the President Tinubu is projected to have a clean sweep on some South West states, while Lawan is favourite to win the 19 Northern States and FCT except Borno. Votes from 10 states with no clear voting decision or swinging in the pendulum between the aspirants are expected to be the battleground. The other aspirants are projected to win only in their states. IMG projection shows that Lawan is likely going to sweep the votes from Yobe, Taraba, Adamawa, Bauchi, Kebbi, Abia, Imo, Ebonyi, Anambra, Enugu, Zamfara, Kano, Katsina, Kwara, Jigawa Kaduna, Sokoto, Benue, Nasarawa, Niger, Plateau, Cross River, FCT and Zamfara. Aside his known grip on Lagos and Osun, Tinubu is projected to win in Edo, Oyo, Ogun, Borno and Ondo.