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Rumbles Over PMB’s Second Term Bid

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In this report, MUYIWA OYINLOLA writes that recent declaration of President Muhammadu Buhari for a second term in office is generating discordant tunes among political parties

n a surprise move, President Muhammadu Buhari on Monday shocked the nation, particularly the political class when he announced he was throwing his hat into the ring to seek re-election in 2019.

The declaration which he made during a closed-door meeting of the National Executive Committee (NEC) of his All Progressives Congress (APC) was therefore received with mixed feelings among politicians across the country.

Buhari’s declaration has nevertheless put to an end weeks and months of speculation about whether he would run for a second term or not.

Although he had remained silent overtime on whether he would contest for a second term or not, his ‘body language’, according to those who could read it has always suggested he would give a shot at it.

Perhaps, former Presidents Olusegun Obasanjo and Ibrahim Babangida are two of such individuals who could read the handwriting on the wall, hence their call on Buhar not to run for another term of office. They both urged the president to leave the stage for younger people.

Obasanjo in his famous latter earlier in the year went a step further by stating that both the ruling APC and the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) have failed the nation and do not deserve to continue to produce leaders a for the country.

However, while reacting to Buhari’s declaration, National Chairman of Inter-Party Advisory Council (IPAC) and chairman of the Accord Party, Muhammed Nalado, said “Buhari has done the right thing by declaring his ambition. “It is constitutional.

Buhari is the incumbent president of Nigeria. He represented a political party in 2015 and he won. So, he has every right to run for second term. It is his constitutional right; I don’t have any objection to it”, Nalado added.

Also speaking in the same vein, National Chairman of Democratic Peoples Party (DPP), Mr Garshon Benson, said “Buhari has the right to contest like every other Nigerian.”

Benson said while it was Buhari’s right to seek re-election, the decision of who becomes APC candidate lies with the party, and who becomes Nigeria’s president would be decided by Nigerians through the polls.

He added that “For me, the man is qualified, it is his right to re-contest if he thinks he has performed well to win the mandate of Nigerians. It is now left for his party whether to become APC candidate or not.

“We in other parties are going to present our candidates for Nigerians to decide. If the citizens now say he has done well and he should continue that will be it.”

Benson, however said the most important thing was to allow the 2019 general elections to be free, fair and credible.

The position of National Chairman of National Unity Party (NUP) and IPAC Secretary General, Chief Perry Opara, is also in line with those above as he stated that it was good that Buhari has announced his re-election bid.

“As leader of a coalition of political parties, I will call a meeting of national chairmen of parties so that we can assess the situation and agree on the next line of action”, he said.

Meanwhile, National chairman of Green Party of Nigeria, GPN, and former Presidential candidate in 2015 general election, Chief Sam Eke, said re-electing Buhari for a second term would be a continuation of suffering in the country.

He explained that the President was entitled to his own right to seek for re-election, stressing that only Nigerians would decide who will be next President of the country come 2019.

“I want to really tell you that the declaration by President Buhari, if Nigerians allow it to see the light of the day,that means Nigerians like and enjoy suffering.

“I want to also say that Nigerians that I have seen,will not want continuation of suffering, instability, lack of security in the system. So, I know very well that is far from reality. And now that he has declared, we expect more people to declare.

“A lot of people will declare and Nigerians will choose the best candidate from among them. We know Buhari has the legitimate right to contest or seek re-election, but the fact remains that, what is obtainable in this country is suffering.

“And we do not want to continue the suffering. There is no one that enjoys suffering, instability, killings or a lot of uncertainties. He is entitled to his own ambition, but Nigerian electorates will decide.

But the major opposition party, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) said the decision of Buhari to run for another term is an internal affair of the APC.

A terse statement by the National Publicity Secretary of PDP, Kola Ologbondiyan, further said the will not waste time on Buhari’s mere declaration until he emerges the party’s candidate.

“The declaration has placed President Buhari among the ranks of aspirants seeking to be the President of the Federal Republic, effective May 29, 2019.

“Until he becomes the candidate of the APC, we will not spend precious time on his mere show of interest,” the statement said.

Also reacting, the United Progressive Party (UPP) in its reaction said that President Buhari is merely exercising his right as an incumbent President to seek re-election as allowed by the constitution.

The national chairman of the UPP, Chief Chekwas Okorie, said “He has said what people expected from him”.

He, however, observed that it is not going to be a walk over for him. “He has not endeared himself to the electorate, due to his many failed promises”, he said.

He also observed that President Buhari has the right of first refusal in the APC. “It also means that APC already has a candidate. It is however the end of the road for APC.

“APC leaders have been saying that they have no candidate better than Buhari. But Buhari has failed to impress Nigerians. By his emergence, it means that APC should be ready for humiliation in the next elections”, he asserted.

In the same vein, the Conference of Nigeria Political Party (CNPP) has said Buhari has nothing to show Nigerians, in terms of concrete achievement, to make him think of seeking re-election beyond the fact that re-contesting is a legal right.

While reacting to the President’s declaration of intention to seek re-election, the CNPP in a statement signed by its Secretary General, Chief Willy Ezugwu, maintained that Nigeria should be thinking of electing a patriotic politician who understands economic dynamics and inclusive governance.

“It is disappointing that the President will choose to declare for a second term at a time when the security of lives and property of Nigerians cannot be guaranteed.

“The President’s declaration of intention to run at this time is the height of insensitivity to the plight of Nigerians who are suffering under his administration as he has nothing concrete in terms of achievement to show Nigerians.

While the parties have continued to react to the president’s declaration, what is new in the polity is the fact that the stand of the president is now formally known and the various political parties can now prepare for the forthcoming general elections.

those above as he stated that it was good that Buhari has announced his re-election bid.

“As leader of a coalition of political parties, I will call a meeting of national chairmen of parties so that we can assess the situation and agree on the next line of action”, he said.

Meanwhile, National chairman of Green Party of Nigeria, GPN, and former Presidential candidate in 2015 general election, Chief Sam Eke, said re-electing Buhari for a second term would be a continuation of su ering in the country.

He explained that the President was entitled to his own right to seek for re- election, stressing that only Nigerians would decide who will be next President of the country come 2019.

“I want to really tell you that the declaration by President Buhari, if Nigerians allow it to see the light of the day,that means Nigerians like and enjoy su ering.

“I want to also say that Nigerians that I have seen,will not want continuation of su ering, instability, lack of security in the system. So, I know very well that is far from reality. And now that he has declared, we expect more people to declare.

“A lot of people will declare and Nigerians will choose the best candidate from among them. We know Buhari has the legitimate right to contest or seek re-election, but the fact remains that, what is obtainable in this country is su ering.

“And we do not want to continue the su ering. ere is no one that enjoys su ering, instability, killings or a lot of uncertainties. He is entitled to his own ambition, but Nigerian electorates will decide.

But the major opposition party, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) said the decision of Buhari to run for another term is an internal a air of the APC.

A terse statement by the National Publicity Secretary of PDP, Kola Ologbondiyan, further said the will not waste time on Buhari’s mere declaration until he emerges the party’s candidate.

“ e declaration has placed President Buhari among the ranks of aspirants seeking to be the President of the Federal Republic, e ective May 29, 2019.

“Until he becomes the candidate of the APC, we will not spend precious time on his mere show of interest,” the statement said.

Also reacting, the United Progressive Party (UPP) in its reaction said that President Buhari is merely exercising his right as an incumbent President to seek re-election as allowed by the constitution.

e national chairman of the UPP, Chief Chekwas Okorie, said “He has said what people expected from him”.

He, however, observed that it is not going to be a walk over for him. “He has not endeared himself to the electorate, due to his many failed promises”, he said.

He also observed that President Buhari has the right of rst refusal in the APC. “It also means that APC already has a candidate. It is however the end of the road for APC.

“APC leaders have been saying that they have no candidate better than Buhari. But Buhari has failed to impress Nigerians. By his emergence, it means that APC should be

eady for humiliation in the next elections”, he asserted.

In the same vein, the Conference of Nigeria Political Party (CNPP) has said Buhari has nothing to show Nigerians, in terms of concrete achievement, to make him think of seeking re- election beyond the fact that re-contesting is a legal right.

While reacting to the President’s declaration of intention to seek re-election, the CNPP in a statement signed by its Secretary General, Chief Willy Ezugwu, maintained that Nigeria should be thinking of electing a patriotic politician who understands economic dynamics and inclusive governance.

“It is disappointing that the

President will choose to declare for a second term at a time when the security of lives and property of Nigerians cannot be guaranteed.

“ e President’s declaration of intention to run at this time is the height of insensitivity to the plight of Nigerians who are su ering under his administration as he has nothing concrete in terms of achievement to show Nigerians.

While the parties have continued to react to the president’s declaration, what is new in the polity is the fact that the stand of the president is now formally known and the various political parties can now prepare for the forthcoming general elections.




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