By Dirisu Yakubu
ABUJA – Barely a week after former president, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo counselled President Muhammadu Buhari, in a special statement not to seek re-election in 2019, the posters of former Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Alhaji Babagana Kingibe have appeared in strategic places in Abuja, the nation’s capital.
With the inscription, “Sai Baba for President 2019,” Kingibe is allegedly the first presidential aspirant on the platform of the the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) to indicate interest in the plum seat.
A Presidency source who craved anonymity said Kingibe’s ambition is already causing friction within the ruling party. This is so as there exists a perceived agreement within the APC that no one in the party would challenge Buhari until he decides not to seek re-election.
Kingibe, a Kanuri from Borno State, was former National Chairman of the defunct Social Democratic Party (SDP). He was appointed SGF by late President Umaru Musa Yar’ Adua in 2007 only to be sacked in 2008 for alleged “disloyalty” to the former president who had just returned from medical treatment abroad.
He resurfaced again last November when Buhari appointed him to head a panel to “Review operational ,technical and administrative structure” of the National Intelligence Agency (NIA), in the aftermath of the $43 million of the agency found in a Lagos apartment.
It is believed that Kingibe’s decision to re-activate his old political network will have only one effect: to divide the core North.