Some members of the defunct Congress For Progressive Change (CPC) from the 17 southern states at the weekend said Nigerians are not happy with President Muhammadu Buhari, adding that the ruling party and its supporters may get stoned at campaign grounds if they field President Buhari in 2019 Presidential election.
National Coordinator of the the group, Comrade Francis Ikonomwan, in a statement made available to journalists in Benin, Edo state, described the call by members of Buhari Support Group on President Muhammadu Buhari to contest the 2019 election as “political sycophancy.”
He described members of the Buhari Support Group as a “bunch of people who do not mean well for APC and Nigerians at large, but rather, their selfish interests.”
Ikonomwan who noted that President Buhari has failed to deliver on his campaign promises and so Nigerians can no longer entrust him with the leadership of the country, urged him to ignore such calls, adding that it is not in the interest of the nation.
“We are saddened that, these people are not sensitive to the plight of Nigerians. The fact remains that Nigerians are not happy with President Muhammadu Buhari and our party, the APC.
“President Muhammadu Buhari, has not been able to deliver on his campaign promises. What has this administration to campaign with in every sector of the economy or is it the fight against corruption that has been swept under the carpet?
“Even the political leaders and the people who fought for his emergence as President today have been abandoned and are all lamenting today.
“There is a total disconnect between the people and the President Muhammadu Buhari-led administration. Poverty and hunger is now the order of the day in Nigeria as we speak. It is getting obvious by day that Nigerians can no longer trust President Muhammadu Buhari with the leadership of this country.
“If APC fields Muhammadu Buhari as its presidential candidate in 2019, we are afraid that Nigerians may stone us at campaign grounds. We may just end up giving the opposition party the presidency in 2019 on a platter of gold.
“However, we wish to call on President Muhammadu Buhari to ignore such call as it is not in the interest of Nigerians.
“President Muhammadu Buhari’s priority now should be how to use the remaining part of his administration to deliver on our campaign promises and do the needful by not indicating interest to contest in 2019,” the statement said.
A chieftain of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Mr Preye Aganaba, has said that the party has no choice than to represent President Muhammadu Buhari to Nigerians for re-election in 2019.
Aganaba, who was a Senatorial candidate on the platform of the party in the 2015 election in Bayelsa State, stated this while speaking with newsmen on Thursday in Abuja.
According to him, the Buhari-led Federal Government is doing well to fix the country’s economy, and to this end, he should be re-elected in 2019.
He added that electricity generation in the country had remarkably improved, while prices of food items and other essentials were also reducing.
“I am not bothered about the economy because that will be fixed. For me, I’m looking at the politics of various zones, because that will determine our winning the election,’’ Aganaba said.
He expressed optimism that with Buhari as APC candidate in 2019 in spite of his perceived health condition, the party would win the general elections, including presidential.
‘’I don’t think the president is terminally ill. Like every other human being, he fell sick. The difference here is that he is the president, so you begin to hear stories.
“But he is back; I saw him yesterday and he is looking very fresh, at least, he rested very well in Daura,’’ he said.
Aganaba said that APC leadership had the ability to resolve crisis at different levels of the party ahead of the 2019 general elections.
On the report credited to Minister of Women Affairs, Sen. Aisha Alhassan, where she expressed her loyalty to the former Vice President Atiku Abubakar, he said that she had a right to her choice.
‘’She has a right to her choice, but I think she is not being fair; if she wants to make such public statement as a serving minister, she should resign her appointment,’’ he said.
The minister had in a BBC Hausa Service interview said that she would support the former vice president if he decided to contest for the presidency in 2019.
Oluwaseun Bisuga is journalist, social media analyst and writer