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2019: Why Buhari should seek re-election – Bello

—APC govs mount pressure on him to seek re-election
—Pass confidence vote on Oyegun

By Johnbosco Agbakwuru

AS governors elected on the platform of the All Progressives Congress, APC, on Thursday night mounted pressure on President Muhammadu Buhari to seek re-election in 2019, the President has said that he was waiting to hear from many Nigerians before he takes any decision.

Governor Yahaya Bello of Kogi State

This is as the APC governors have expressed their support to their national party chairman, Chief John Odigie-Oyegun in the midst of his misunderstanding with the national leader of the party, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu.

The APC governors had held a closed-door meeting with President Buhari at the First Lady Conference room, Presidential Villa, and had told the President to contest for second tenure in 2019, in view of what they described as his excellent performance.

But speaking to State House correspondents after the meeting, Governor Yahaya Bello of Kogi State said that the governors urged the President to stand for the 2019 election because of his achievement.

He did that after the meeting which was also attended by the Vice President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo, the President said that he was still consulting and wanted many Nigerians to speak on that before he could make up his mind.

On the reason why the APC governors were mounting the pressure on the President to seek re-election, Governor Bello said, “‎There are three things. One, he has done excellently well, secondly on fighting corruption.

“Even we among the governors are competing among ourselves to ensure that the little resources available, we utilize for the people, so corruption is reduced to the barest minimum.

“Next is the revival of the economy, job creation and making sure that average Nigerians are comfortable. Based on these performance, we are urging Mr. President to please run and fly in 2019. So, there is nothing more to that.

“And if you look at it critically, the governors themselves who naturally have immunity, we are very careful because you know that Mr. President is incorruptible, if you do, you are going to face the consequences. So, we are careful about that and we are utilizing it.

“You see among ourselves, we are competing among the states to see who does more unlike the previous regime. So we want Mr. President to continue to lead the way so that we can follow and Nigerians will have the dividend of democracy.”

On what was the body language of the president to their request, the Kogi State Governor said, “The President is still consulting and he wants more Nigerians to ‎speak before he can make up his mind. But I am very comfortable that Nigerians will speak loud.”

Also commenting on the allegation by the national leader of the APC, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu to the President that the party’s national Chairman was allegedly frustrating his reconciliation efforts, the Bello said that the APC governors have confidence in the leadership of Chief Oyegun.

He said, “We the governors and majority of APC members have confidence ‎in our national chairman Chief John Oyegun, we also believe in President by appointing Bola Tinubu, our leader to reconcile some aggrieved members of our party.

“However, one size fits all will not in all the states where some erring members need to be disciplined.”

It will be recalled that the Chairman of APC Governors Forum and Imo State Governor, Rochas Okorocha told journalists that their meeting with President Buhari centered primarily on national issues as they affected the APC.

He said, “We discussed so many issues that affects the nations, our party and Mr. President’s ambition to run for 2019 elections.

“It is the desire of the governors that Mr. President should run for this exalted office given his performance in the last two years. We believe that if he continues Nigeria will be better for it.

“Anyhow Mr. President in his usual manner has requested that we give him time and that he will address the nation’s and the caucus of the party very soon. So we should be full of expectations that Mr. President will make officially known to Nigerians his intentions but we hope that his response will be in line with what the governors are thinking.”


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