As debates concerning the vice presidential candidacy of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) continue to occupy central stage of Nigeria’s polity, a coalition of stakeholders from the North East region, has demanded that the party picks the VP candidate from North Central.
This, according to the stakeholders, would afford the party to win the 2023 presidential elections and positions it as a party known for fairness, equity and justice.
This was the major resolution of the North East APC Stakeholders Coalition in Abuja on Sunday, at a well attended emergency meeting.
Stakeholders from the North West had clamoured for the position of vice president, urging the party to nominate one of their own as running mate to Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, the presidential flagbearer of the party in the 2023 general elections.
Addressing newsmen after a successful stakeholders meeting in Abuja Sunday afternoon, Alhaji Abba Aji Suleiman, National Coordinator of North East APC Stakeholders Coalition, faulted the demand of their North Western counterparts, describing it as “not only misplaced, but a gross display of insensitivity to the relevance of other regions in the scheme of things in the party”.
The coalition argued that, “the North West Region had been within the corridor of power in the last seven years of the President Muhammadu Buhari administration, and for such demand to be made indeed speak volume of gross insensitivity.
“It is the considered view of stakeholders in the North East that it would only be fair and just if the vice-presidential slot goes to the North Central, given the numerous contributions of the region to the growth and development of the party.
“The stakeholders must come to terms with the fact that the North Central region hasn’t had a shot at the highest level of governance since the return of democracy in 1999. This time has presented that unique opportunity that must be utilized in the party’s best interest.
“The North-West APC Stakeholders must also realize that the overarching objective of the party is to secure a landslide victory at the polls, and if that is indeed the case, would it make any sense if a region that has been represented adequately in the last ten years, would also demand the vice-presidential slot”.
Speaking further, Alhaji Suleiman stressed that, “unless the stakeholders of our great party in the North West want us to believe that the North Central is not deserving of producing the vice-presidential candidate hence the demand for the vice-presidential slot.
“The stakeholders of the APC in the North East wish to use this medium to call on the leadership of our great party to ensure justice and fairness by providing that the vice presidential slot is given to the North Central”.
He added that the North Central hasn’t had the opportunity to produce either the president or vice president, “despite the array of credible candidates in the region with excellent profiles and broad appeal across the country”, urging the APC to consider the North Central for the position of vice president, as his region had already conceded, for equity sake.