- A recent comment by Chief Bisi Akande has exposed the division in the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC)
- Akande, a former interim national chairman of the APC, said the ticket for 2019 election was open to all
- His comment seems not to have been endorsed by the southwest chieftains of the party
The recent comments of the former interim national chairman of the APC, Chief Bisi Akande, has unsettled chieftains of Nigeria's ruling party.
Akande, a former governor of Osun state, was recently quoted as saying there is no automatic ticket for President Muhammadu Buhari in 2019.
Political analysts interpreted Akande's comment to mean the southwest region is withdrawing support for the president and might present a candidate for the election.
Akande made the comment at the end of a stakeholders meeting of southwest APC leaders on Thursday, October 12.
The meeting which was held at the Oyo state government house, had in attendance governors, National Assembly members, ministers and other senior members of the APC in the region.
According to This Day, majority of the party chieftains, who attended the Ibadan meeting were dismayed that Akande would go completely off the thrust of the meeting and create an avoidable controversy for the party in the region.
A governor at the meeting, who was quoted in the report, said party members at the meeting felt “thoroughly embarrassed” by the development, adding that they may come out to set the record straight as far as the essence of the meeting was concerned.
The unnamed governor said: “That didn’t come up at our meeting at all. It was just a question asked by a journalist and he answered off-the-curve. Everyone is angry now. The only thing we discussed was what was in the communiqué read by Governor Ajimobi and essentially the meeting was about restructuring.
“What we said at the meeting was that the word restructuring is not in our manifesto. What is there is that we would initiate a process that would lead to a bill or an act that will define the governance structure of the country. So, basically, we insisted we never used the word restructuring.
“So, that should be it as far as the meeting was concerned. But he really embarrassed us and we didn’t expect it from him, although it must have been inadvertently, because when he was asked after the interview, he said the question was on the spot and that he just gave an on-the-spot answer. Everybody is really angry now and sadly, he is President Buhari’s number one fan. So, I don’t know where this came from.
“He has a lot of respect for Chief Akande and they get along really well. But as it is, we may have to salvage this situation with one of us coming out to address the issue more pointedly.”
Meanwhile, NAIJ.com had previously listed six APC leaders who may replace Buhari in 2019.
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