By ANDREW ESSIEN ABUJA
Director General of the Progressives Governor Forum (PGF) Salihu Lukman has weighed in on the clamour for zoning in some quarters within the All Progressives Congress (APC) ahead of 2023 general elections, saying that the party is now open for anyone or any zone to contest.
Lukman stressed that the APC has provided a level playing field in APC which has been nurtured and now gaining more traction by the day.
Speaking in Abuja, the party chieftain added that nobody claims that the President or the party has pointed to where power may go.
“For instance, everybody could see that the place is open whether you call it with reference to 2023 or reference to any election, it’s about the fact that the spirit of political contest in the party is now very high. It means that if you want to negotiate as a good negotiator, if you want to canvass as a good canvasser for a specific interest, the party is up to you.
“The pertinent point to make here is that nobody can say President Buhari has decided or there is a decision on the party, this is where it would go. That Is why in the whole speculation out there in the public, you’ll see that there are so many names that are being put in the public space which means that in 2023 there would be contest in
“And if you’re a politician, what are you looking for, is it not
contest? So you go to where you know that if you play your card very well, there is a 50-50 chance that you can get what you want, when you want it and where you want it. That is the message now, which the President has nurtured and popularized in the APC. By extension, it serves a death knell that marks the end of foreclosure in political contests in the Nigerian politics. What we are saying is that foreclosure in our political contests is dead,” he said.
When asked whether the level playing field is practicable in APC, Lukman said: “Of course it is enforceable and it is being enforced. Sound politics is impossible where there’s a foreclosure. In APC today, I can assure you that it is not going to be where you can tell there is a foreclosure.
“So this is the attraction in APC and that is why it is significant for us in APC in spite of all the slander that APC is anti-South East not withstanding all the initiative of the Federal Government in terms of the sound and credible development initiative currently in place in the South East.
“That is why you now see a governor of the calibre, competence and credibility of Governor Umahi in the South East saying no, no, where I am there is no justice. He has not said where he’s going he’s guaranteed of justice but he’s absolutely sure that if he plays his card well in his new environment, there is the likelihood that he will
get adequate justice.”