Presidential candidate of the New Nigerian People’s Party, NNPP, Rabiu Kwankwaso has dismissed speculations of merger talks or collapsing its campaign for any other presidential candidate ahead of the 2023 general elections.
The spokesperson of the Kpresidential campaign, Ladipo Johnson, made this known in an interview with Channels Television Sunrise Daily on Wednesday.
According to Johnson, the NNPP presidential candidate is not ready to step down for anybody.
This dismissal comes amid speculations that Kwankwaso will collapse his campaign for another candidate.
He said, “No merger talks, well it’s too late for mergers but there is no talk of collapsing the campaign, his campaign, or the NNPP campaign at any level at the moment with any of the party or any of the candidate, that is not on the card yet,” he said on the show.
“What I mean when I say not yet is that we are going all the way to February 25 next year.
“As I said, we are focused on the elections. If you have the elections and as people are realising or postulating, there might be a situation for the first time where you do not have an outright winner, then you all have to talk to each other.
“So, no one takes that off the table, but as it were for the first game, to use a football term, Senator Kwankwaso is contesting, we are going all the way, that I can tell you,” Johnson added.
Johnson described speculations that Kwankwaso will collapse his structure for other candidates as mischievous.
He said, “I can tell you for certain that these rumours started months ago, so it’s not out of what they see now, it is out of mischief and we have treated this several times, and I keep saying that he has no reason to want to step down for any of the other candidates. But we will listen to any of them who think they want to work with us not us working with them.”
When asked about his thoughts on postulations that the election is a three-horse race rather than four which rules out his party, Johnson blamed it on the press.
“I can easily tell you why that happened, a lot of the press are situated down here in the southern part of the country. I don’t want to say just Lagos, and I have told a lot of my friends in the press that you can’t call elections in Nigeria without knowing what is going on elsewhere in the core north. We have made that mistake many, many times.
“In the activities that I said we have been involved in for the past two to three months, Senator Kwankwaso is going around. I must admit that for one reason or the other, it was mostly an in-house thing, so except for pictures and videos that appeared via social media from members recording and whatever, we didn’t officially invite the press there.
“So, I say that is one of the reasons why there might be views being postulated in that direction. I assure you that once things kick off next week, and you begin to see the activities, then you will realise the groundswell of support that he has around the country.”