Gov. Ugwuanyi made the call when the four PDP presidential aspirants visited him at the Enugu State Government Lodge, Abuja, on Tuesday, in continuation of their consultations towards the emergence of a consensus presidential candidate of the party.
Speaking on behalf of the delegation, after a closed-door meeting with Gov. Ugwuanyi, President of the 8th Senate, Senator Saraki said they discussed how to strengthen the unity of Nigeria.
He added that they also deliberated on the future of the PDP and the possibility of a consensus presidential candidate of the party in the forthcoming National Convention.
Saraki disclosed that the push by some PDP presidential aspirants for a consensus candidate for the 2023 polls is not a northern agenda.
According to him, “When we started about three weeks ago, most of the aspirants we had then were mainly in the north. We were talking to the aspirants across the country. Now, because more people have come out in the South and we are all going to meet.
“All the aspirants are going to meet. We are talking about Nigeria. We are not talking about the northern aspirants or southern aspirants.
“I have good news that already, moves are being made by the aspirants in the South to meet and eventually we all meet and see one consensus, that consensus is a Nigerian that represent all the groups.
“So, I just want to be clear about that, and be reassured it is not about just issue of a northern consensus, not at all. It’s a consensus for the PDP and one Nigerian.”
Saraki added: “The most important ambition now is how to begin to fix Nigeria and put Nigeria on the right course.”
The four presidential aspirants have been consulting with PDP leaders across the country on the need for the party to present a consensus presidential candidate ahead of the 2023 polls.
Ruling APC Party Lists 3 Presidential Aspirants Who Bought N100Million Forms But Failed To Submit
The National Publicity Secretary of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Felix Morka has mentioned the names of three persons who did not submit the party’s N100 million presidential nomination and expression of interest forms they had bought.
Morka said out of the 28 aspirants who bought the forms, only three failed to submit the forms namely: Minister of Labour and Employment, Senator Chris Ngige; Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Timipre Sylva and Central Bank Governor, Godwin Emefiele.
Ngige and Sylva are among the members of President Muhammadu Buhari’s cabinet who made a U-turn after the President directed ministers with political ambitions to resign from office.
Morka said this on Wednesday while featuring on Channels TV’s Politics Today.
The APC spokesperson also said Eagle’s Square in Abuja had not been confirmed as the venue for the presidential primaries.
Speaking on the aspirants, Morka said some aspirants only reneged in public but have yet to officially communicate with the media.
“Some of those who reneged might have done so in the public space but are yet to communicate that to the party and they don’t necessarily happen at the same time.
“Except for those who have made their submissions, we don’t have information confirming or notifying us of their decisions.
“We have 28 altogether who purchased forms and at the last count, we have about 25 who made submissions of those forms but three of them did not and that will be Senator Chris Ngige, Godwin Emefiele and Timpire Sylvia.”
Morka earlier said the party had reviewed its timetable for primary elections for various elective positions.
He released the new timetable on Wednesday with a few adjustments to the former one.
He said the new dates were approved by the party’s National Working Committee at its meeting on Wednesday.
The statement read, “The National Working Committee of the All Progressives Congress on Wednesday, 18th of May, 2022, approved an adjusted Timetable/Schedule of Activities for the Governorship, State House of Assembly, House of Representatives, Senate and Presidential primaries and appeals as follows:
“Governorship and House of Representatives – Thursday, 26th of May, 2022. Senate and House of Assembly – Friday, 27th of May, 2022.
“For election appeals: Governorship and House of Representatives – Friday, 27th of May, 2022.
“Senate and House of Assembly – Saturday, 28th of May, 2022. Special convention for presidential primaries holds Sunday 29th – Monday, 30th of May, 2022.”
Ohanaeze Calls For Arrest Of Northern Elders Forum Spokesman, Baba-Ahmed, Says He’s A Threat To Nigeria
The apex Igbo socio-cultural organisation, Ohanaeze Ndigbo has slammed Dr. Hakeem Baba-Ahmed, the spokesman for the Northern Elders Forum (NEF), over his broadcast that Igbo should leave Nigeria if they so desire.
Baba-Ahmed in a widely-circulated broadcast video said “we said if secession is what every Igbo wants, and this is what the Igbos want, the nation should not fight a war over it”.
He went further to call on the northerners resident in Southern Nigeria to consider returning to the North.
But reacting to the position of Baba-Ahmed, on Wednesday, Ohanaeze spokesman, Dr Alex Ogbonnia, said the statement was extremely nauseating, uncouth, provocative, incendiary, inflammatory, and above all very arrogant and licentious.
Ogbonnia said, “We are not distracted by lowly persons who by the circumstances of their birth and conditions in life do not weigh the implications of their public conduct, remarks and actions before going public.
“The urbane among us know that Nigeria is one of the countries of the world that unites several nations in one; a federation of various nations or a multination state. Nigeria, like every other multination state, requires leaders who can formulate ideologies, policies and programmes aimed at galvanising or harmonising the diverse component units at all times.
“This accounts for such Federal Government schemes as the National Youths Service (NYSC), Federal Government (unity) colleges and other unifying national bodies. On the other hand, remarks with centrifugal dynamics are deliberately avoided in order to engender a genuine unity for the multicultural and multinational units of the country.”
He described the call for northerners living in Southern Nigeria to consider relocating back to the north as bad.
Ohanaeze recalled that in September 2021, Baba-Ahmed, in reaction to the position of the Southern governors with respect to rotational presidency, deployed such unwarranted extreme rhetoric as “heaven will not fall if a northerner is elected the next Nigerian President”.
“It is very certain that Baba-Ahmed knows next to nothing about the economy and political tendencies of Nigeria.
“In his narrow thoughts, he does not reflect on the consequences of the Igbo leaving the country. In his delusion, he believes that the economy of the remaining part of Nigeria will be better off if the Igbo or the Ogoni, or the Yoruba or the Ijaw or the Edo, Tiv, Igala, etc. should go their separate ways.
“For the avoidance of doubt, the Igbo youths who were not even born before or during the Nigerian civil war and of course were not accessories to the war, are aggrieved over the alienation of the Igbo from the structures of power in Nigeria.
“For instance, it is public knowledge that going by rotation and zoning principle that has been entrenched as a variant of Nigerian democracy, it is the turn of the South and indeed the South East to produce the president of the Federal Republic of Nigeria come 2023. Nigerians and the world are living witness to the shenanigans and conspiracies by the likes of Baba-Ahmed to truncate the Igbo democratic rights.
“It is in response to such injustice that triggers the agitation among the Igbo youth for self-determination. Such a scenario played out among the Yoruba, South West when Chief MKO Abiola’s presidency was annulled. And confidence and trust were restored with the zoning of the presidency to the South West in the persons of Chief Olusegun Obasanjo of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and Chief Olu Falae of the Alliance for Democracy (AD) in 1999.
“Ohanaeze Ndigbo, the apex Igbo socio-cultural body and indeed the mouthpiece of the entire Igbo both at home and in the Diaspora, has repeatedly made it clear that the Igbo want to coexist peacefully and in unity with our fellow Nigerians.
“The diverse Igbo contributions to the economic development of all parts of the country do not indicate otherwise but the unity we want is not the unity of Jonah in the belly of the whale, but unity in holy matrimony. While the former is characterised by defecation and suffocation, the latter is procreative and productive.
“Dr. Hakeem Baba-Ahmed has a shady background. His Mauritanian root betrays an identity crisis and psychological torture in him and he thus believes that to ingratiate himself to the Hausa-Fulani establishment, he should invest in vicious invectives against the entire South and the Igbo in particular. This is against natural justice and all known principles of nation-building.
“We reiterate that the broadcast by Baba Ahmed is a threat to peace and unity of the country and the security agencies should act on time to serve as a deterrent to some others harbouring such mindsets against the unity and corporate existence of Nigeria.”