Ahead of the 2023 elections, there have been speculations that some All Progressives Congress (APC) leaders are considering fielding former President Goodluck Jonathan as the ruling party’s presidential candidate.
Though Jonathan still remains a member of the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) since his defeat in 2015, rumours flying around claim there have been moves to lure him to the APC.
Amid the speculations, Daily Trust in a report filed on Monday, September 6, stated that an APC chieftain whose name was not revealed claimed that Jonathan was approached to defect to the ruling party so he could pick the party’s presidential ticket to win the 2023 poll and hand over power to the North in 2027.
Southern political stakeholders said a gentleman pact was reached by APC leaders prior to the 2015 poll that the party would cede its apex ticket to their region after President Muhammadu Buhari’s tenure.
However, the APC chieftainh was cited as saying that some northern political stakeholders want Jonathan because he is the only southern politician that is not constitutionally allowed to do eight years again, having served his first term between 2011 and 2015.
According to the APC source, having Jonathan as the gv in 2023 is the north’s strategy to return to power in 2027.
The APC chieftain said northern political stakeholders were feeling cheated that the south had spent more years in the State House since the return to democracy in 1999.
Meanwhile, an All Progressives Congress (APC) group, South East Mandate (SEM), has appealed to President Muhammadu Buhari to facilitate the process of nominating a presidential candidate from trusted members of the party from the region ahead of the 2023 general elections.
The group also urged other political parties in Nigeria to cede its presidential ticket to the southeast in the spirit of justice,equity, and good conscience.
Convener of the group, Senator Julius Ucha, who briefed journalists after their recent meeting, identified lack of trust,latent fear, suspicion, and prejudices as some of the factors holding the southeast down in Nigeria’s political equation,saying it was poised to reverse the trend.
Ucha also listed the inability of the region to build a common platform to articulate their common interest as another challenge to its political growth.
The Punch newspaper quoted him as saying the southeast was a solid part of Nigeria and should be allowed to producing the president because equality is equity.
On his part, a former House of Representatives aspirant in Kwara state, Alhaji Sheriff Shagaya has canvassed for a power shift to young talented men and women in the 2023 general elections.
Shagaya told Daily Sun newspaper in an interview that, electing young people in public office would bring fresh ideas that would improve the socio-economic growth of Nigeria.
In another development, a message has been sent to former president Goodluck Jonathan. The message was sent by by no other person than a former national chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Dr Okwesilieze Nwodo, Leadership Newspaper reports .
Nwodo urged Jonathan not to do the mistake of defecting to the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC).
The politician claimed that defection will destroy what is left of his integrity. According to him, APC destroyed Jonathan in all their actions.
He added that he would be extremely disappointed if Jonathan joins the ruling party.
Going further, he said joining APC will be meaningless because the former president won’t be able to cause a radical change from within the APC, added that there is nothing to celebrate in APC.
This message reechoes a call by another Nigerian to Goodluck Jonathan
Nwodo said: “Personally, my advice to President Goodluck Jonathan is that no matter how much he’s being wooed to join APC,whatever is left of his integrity as a former president of Nigeria will disappear the day he joins APC.
That’s my personal advice, because no group of people have been so virulent in destroying him as a person and president as the APC. So what is he looking for there? Does he think he can reverse the pit that Nigeria has fallen with APC by joining the APC? I don’t think so.”