Interestingly, all the serving governors identified so far are from the same North West zone where Buhari hails from. They also belong to the same political party, the All Progressives Congress, APC.
They are Nasir El-Rufai of Kaduna, Aminu Tambuwal of Sokoto and Abubakar Yari of Zamfara.
Yari, already heads an influential pressure group comprising his colleagues. . Even more, insiders said his 2019 ambition is an open secret among his associates. His ambition is however viewed as shocking since he has not recorded any achievement even as a governor, one of his closest watchers said.
El-Rufai allegedly used his closeness to the General to his advantage as he dislodged Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, which at that time had a sitting vice president. He is not known to be openly working against the president, “but we know from intelligence that he wants to run and he doesn’t want Buhari to run in 2019,” an insider told Newsdiaryonline.
His watcher said “he is very controversial. He is viewed as always taking tough measures that could alienate him from his people. But he is also a focused person despite his weaknesses, one of his critics confessed.
Tambuwal is said to be going about it with caution. He was pushed into the 2015 race by Asiwaju Bola Tinubu. He however chickened out. But the same pressure group is believed to be working on this governor, who is also said to have realized that the main politician pushing him has an ulterior motive.
His political moves are however under watch, especially because he was fingered to be one of the pillars behind the emergence of Yakubu Dogara as speaker, House of Representatives against the wishes of APC chieftains.
Aside from those described above, a former governor from a state known as the commercial nerve centre of the north is also known to be working very hard towards 2019
. He is not even hiding his own, one observer claimed. This ex-governor who was also in the 2015 race is accused of fuelling the Buhari certificate scandal in the hope he could cash on it having performed well in the 2015 APC primaries. “We believe he along with one of his key allies who is known to be formerly close to Buhari used PDP agents to stir up the certificate scandal” a source told Newsdiaryonline.
The former governor’s 2019 plans are said to be more intriguing. He is known to have contracted some marabouts who have assured him that he will succeed Buhari. In fact, his marabouts has allegedly assured him that his political chances will be brighter from March 2016.
One of those watching the political gladiators in the north also said categorically that “the political ambition of former vice president Atiku Abubakar is an open secret. From the South West also, the ambition of Tinubu is still alive. We don’t know how he wants to make it with Osinbajo presently a vice president,” the insider said.
“What I can tell you is that none of these 2019 gladiators has the capacity to tackle corruption like Buhari is doing now. I believe God will not allow any of these people to stop him” one of the president’s associates said.