What the APC needs.

All glory be to God, the Lord Almighty, omnipotent, majestic, merciful and most beneficent, that the APC scaled the hurdle of the convention that naysayers had banked on; as the stage where the party would disintegrate to smithereens even before the 2023 elections — the way Nigeria’s disintegration had long been predicted by so many prophets of doom and gloom. Unfortunately for both groups, the boom of an explosion, that would end APC or Nigeria in the bigger picture, has not come so far, and God willing, it won’t come. So many hurdles have been thrown — from daring terrorist attacks to economic sabotage; not limited to adulterated fuel, fuel scarcity, diesel hike, and industrial action. All these have been dug around, thrown and hurled at the APC, but somehow, as if by voodoo, the PMB led party and administration have navigated the mines; even though costly.

The present influx of all manner of presidential aspirants is not only laughable and comical, but shameful that people from so many dark alleys and unhealthy vineries are coming forward to seek the highest office in the country — under a party of change and progress. There definitely needs to be a change in the processes that qualifies one to approach the party for its nomination forms, similar to the NDLEA boss’s statement, asking for drug tests for aspirants across all parties. There should be a smokescreen for the party to operate under, in qualifying the aspirants who want to purchase the nomination forms. It’s rather late but in the future, these guidelines should be entrenched in either the party constitution, or the Nigerian constitution.

Mallam Adamu Adamu was quite instrumental, in quelling the crises that had engulfed the leadership of the party, over who was to become Chairman, amidst the Gov. Maimala led CCEPC timidness. Gov. Elrufai had unequivocally pronounced who the governors had picked, along with Mr. President, as the new party Chair. That picture of Mr. President, Gov. Maimala, and Mallam Adamu in London, and the subsequent Presidential letter to the APC Governor’s Forum Chairman — spoke volumes of the selfless, noble apolitical and fair advisory that Mallam Adamu provides Mr. President, anytime he is called upon on critical issues. The restructuring of the party secretariat and the sixth gear, on which the APC is driving, has shown that Sen. Abdullahi Adamu is the best choice for the party. His age and experience would be great stabilising factors in the scheme of things, as events unfold.

The new challenge that requires forthright, unbiased and brave counselling, is the issue of zoning the Presidential ticket of the APC. Written or unwritten, it is intelligent to note that the APC is a brainchild of the Northern CPC, and Southern ACN; and they came together via concise understandings and agreements, to give birth to a common roof, laterly joined by ANPP, APGA and nPDP. The North has enjoyed power for 8 years, and it is now the turn of the south. This is not just by Federal character principles, or zoning agreements, but by common sense, fairness, equality, equity, togetherness and the spirit of nationhood. Above all, in the interest of national security. The way the party chair was ceded to the North, is the same manner the Presidential ticket should be conceeded to the South. All those coming from behind, as Northern aspirants, should be stopped from causing confusion and purchasing forms as stakeholders. The party should brazenly spell this out.

Looking at the PDP and envisaging that they would field a Northern candidate, is giving some APC arrowheads, the mindset of fielding a Northern candidate in the APC. Ofcourse the game of politics is filthy and dirty, but the same game produced a PMB of integrity and unblemished records. APC should not untango with honour, loyalty and servitude, because believe it or not, It actually pays — both in the long and short run. It would be deceitful to the Southern APC, to field a Northern candidate by the APC, just because the PDP is going to do that. Northerners would eventually claim the title of ‘dishonorable politicians’, which is just not their cultural way. The APC has to go with what they have done infrastructurally, and the like, to convince the polity.

A very good Northern Vice-Presidential candidate in the APC, can garner the much needed support from the North. He should be a candidate that can connect to the grassroot-North, and get their buy in. The APC should have an arrangement where this VP candidate would oversee the sectors that would solve the problems the North is facing i.e security, education and infrastructure. Northern roads are terrible and the almajiris have overpopulated our streets. So this Northern running mate should be a candidate that the President would trust, respect and delegate authority to; the way PMB does with Prof. Osinbajo. He should be a performer and a reformer. There are a number of them in the APC-North, like Sen. Kashim Shettima, Gov. Elrufai and so on. I think doing it the honorable way constitutes change and progress to a larger proportion, than doing it the political-harakiri way. I am choosing to be a Nigerian first, before being a northerner. If Nigeria doesn’t progress or remain one and peaceful, the North will neither be peaceful, nor will it progress. Let us not put the cart before the horse. We should also not play the cat as we do not have nine lives. We should not be deceived that there are so many ways to skin a cat, because in some ways, we will lose the cat along with our legendary cat skinning skills.

Tahir is Talban Bauchi.

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