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2023: Jonathan, The Beautiful Bride Of APC And PDP

By Stephen Ubanna

Until, he handed over power to President  Muhammadu Buhari  of the ruling All Progressive Congress, APC, in May 29, 2015, former President Goodluck Jonathan, had  a word for Nigerians: I am leaving the Presidential Villa but you will  soon know the difference between my government and the incoming government.

He may have read the handwriting on the wall, that the APC, government will  bring  economic hardship to Nigerians but wants to leave  with his head high. He got it right.  Barely six years out of office, Nigerians may have seen the difference between  his  government and that of the APC.

The ruling APC, may have seen that Jonathan, the Bayelsa born Politician is now a beautiful pride that the  party  had started reaching him using all his known Political contacts  and Associates to dump the PDP in order to pick its 2023 Presidential Ticket. Uche secondus, the National Chairman, of the opposition People’s Democratic Party, PDP, may have alluded o this  when he said that  there have been reports  suggesting that  the two major parties in the country, APC and the PDP, have been doing everything within their capacity   to get former  President Jonathan to run for the Presidency in 2023’’.  The party may not have stopped in paching only the former Nigerian  President but other notable  PDP Chieftains from the south east and south-south geopolitical region including serving governors and Senators.

The rumour became pronounced that he may contest the 2023 Presidential election on the ticket of the APC, because of his close working  relationship with the Katsina  state born Nigeria President  that he has used him on some international assignments.  The most recent was his appointment as the Economic Community of West African States, ECOWAS, Special Envoy to help  mediate  in the political Crisis in Mali.

Former President Jonathan, Poached By The APC For The 2023 ,General Elections

Also a closed door  meeting  between some APC , governors and the the former President  at the instance of  Buhari,     in his  Abuja residence, where  the idea to him speaks volume. Mala Buni, governor of Yobe state and acting National Chairman  of the APC, was sais said to have led the  governors to  Jonathan’s  residence  for the secret meeting.

 The closed door  meeting , according to party sources followed the defection of Dave Umahi, governor of Eboyi state, south east Nigeria to the party. The APC Chieftains who are acting out script may have used the Umahi defection to the party as a bait to convince Jonathan to dump the PDP, in order to clinch the party Presidential ticket in 2023.

  Umahi, may have known that the APC, is shopping fora Presidential material from the south east that when he was poached, he did not hesitate in dumping the PDP.   They may not have been successful in their plot. That much   was said  by  Secondus, the PDP National Chairman.

 Secondus,   knowing  the plan of the ruling  APC,  to use every known political tricks to force Jonathan and other notable figures   in the  party to defect to the APC  , preparatory for the 2023, Presidential election had cried out. Appealing to the Katsina state born Nigerian President and his fronts  ‘’to stop running up and down poaching  opposition  party members, noting that’’ what should bother ruling party  most for now  should be good governance, tackling the country’s broken down  insecurity and the economy’’

He noted that if Buhari and his foot soldiers would  stop running  up and down  and face  the reason why  the people  gave them  the mandate to govern, ‘’there will be no security issues, there will be no economic issues like hunger or bad governance’’.

He may have sent a message to  the former President that he has  no reason to bow to pressure from the APC to join the party   as he and other  Chieftains  of the PDP  are free  to vie  for the party Presidential ticket   in the 2023  general elections.

Gov.Buni And Acting Chairman, APC, Led Other Governors To A Closed Door With Jonathan In His Abuja residence To Prepare His Mind For for 2023

He has made it clear to those that cares to listen that  the party  which is out to reclaim power in 2023, general  election, choice of Presidential Candidate   would been guided   by the report of the  Bala Mohammed, who incidentally is the governor of Bauchi state, Committee, which work is still pending. The Committee is expected to come out with a report  on why ‘’ the party lost  the 2019, Presidential election and then make amends.

 Even though, the APC and PDP, are making effort , to win Jonathan by their side, the later has kept his political ambition for 2023, a closely guided secret.  Accosted by some  Journalists  after an event  organised  by the Commonwealth  Community Choir in Abuja recently, and the question was  posed to him that he is being poached by the APC to pick the pasrty  Presidential ticket in 2023, for the asking, he was very evasive in his reply:  it is too early to talk about that.

He may have used the opportunity  to urge Nigerians’’ to support  the Buhari government to put an end to the security challenge in the country’’, stressing that  ‘’Nigeria is not the only country  in the world that is faced  by insecurity’’.   His response to the Journalistic questions may  have  given  people the impression that he has a soft spot for Buhari and the APC.

Osita Okechukwu, Director General, Voice of Nigeria, VOA, and Buhari loyalist, may have  spoken  the mind of the Nigerian President  that the APC, will zone  its 2023 Presidential  ticket to the  south east, explaining ‘’that  a President  of Igbo extraction  would transform the economy’’. Emma Enechukwu, Vice Chairman, the south east for Presidency 2023 Movement, SEFORP2023, has corroborated  Okechukwu, the VOA, Director General’s claims   that  a President  of Igbo extraction  would develop the country. 

But even though,  Buhari, and his loyalists succeed in getting  the next Presidential  Candidate  of the APC, in 2023, from  the south east, the south west chieftains of the party  will kick against it which may factionalise the party.   Babatunde Raji Fashola, a senior Advocate  of  Nigeria , SAN and former governor of Lagos state , who incidentally is the minister of works and housing,  may have sent a  signal to the party  leadership of what to expect from the region  if it fails’’ to respect the agreement on zoning’’.  

Fashola had said that though the  199 Constitution , as amended,  does not provide  for a zoning  formular,  noting that  ‘’it is a matter of honour  for parties   which had entered  into such agreements  to stay true to their words’’.  He had said that the Opposition  PDP,  which  is the former President Jonathan’s own party, now being poached to dump the party and join the APC, has nothing to offer Nigerians, an indication that Jonathan has nothing to offer Nigerians.

Given minister’s impression that  the Party is not thinking well, he  had said that whosoever  picks the PDP, Presidential ticket in 2023 will be defeated in the general elections. The works and housing minister may have become very outspoken  about  the need for the party to respect the zoning agreement because of the rumour making  the rounds that his political godfather, Asiwaju Ahmed Bola Tinbu, a former governor of Lagos state and the APC National Leader has a Presidential ambition. He wants him to clinch the APC Presidential  ticket  on a platter of gold without Competition from other interested parties .

Stephen Ubanna

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