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APC Presidential Candidates In Last Minute Scramble, GMB Lobbies Governors, Atiku Meets Delegate

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The Two major aspirants contesting for the presidential ticket of the All Progressives Congress (APC) were on Tuesday engaged in a last minute scramble for the votes of the 8,000 delegates that would determine who would square up against President Goodluck Jonathan in the 2015 presidential election.

The aspirants will slug it out at the party’s national convention slated to commence wednesday at the Teslim Balogun Stadium in Lagos.

The major contenders for APC’s presidential ticket are former military Head of State, Major-General Muhammadu Buhari and former Vice-President Atiku Abubakar.

Reports from Lagos say, 12 governors of the party are backing Muhammadu Buhari for the presidential ticket of the All Progressives Congress (APC) and are currently meeting with him at Lagos House, Marina, Lagos, to strategise for the primary.

The governors had earlier met at an office in Victoria Island on Tuesday night to take a position after a marathon session, overseen by APC national leader, Bola Tinubu.

At the Lagos House meeting, it was agreed that everything should be done to ensure an orderly and transparent convention to avoid any negative publicity that could damage the image of the party.

At the meeting, held at Bola Tinubu’s instance at an office on Adeola Odeku Street, Victoria Island, Lagos, the governors who agreed to support Buhari are: Abdulaziz Yari (Zamfara), Ibrahim Geidam (Yobe), Kashim Shettima (Borno), Tanko Al-Makura (Nasarawa), Abdulfatah Ahmed (Kwara), Babatunde Fashola (Lagos), Abiola Ajimobi (Oyo), Adams Oshiomhole (Edo), Rauf Aregbesola (Osun), Ibikunle Amosun (Ogun), Aliyu Wamakko (Sokoto) and Rotimi Amaechi (Rivers).

Rabiu Kwankwaso has been persuaded to step down for Buhari, which he agreed, but will still put up an appearance without putting up a fight at the convention.

While Buhari is on with the governors, Atiku, on his part, is basing his calculations on the fact that APC governors control only 14 states and their influence in the remaining 22 states is not strong.

Atiku is currently speaking to delegates as he has zeroed in on delegates from 16 states which they consider winnable: Adamawa, Sokoto, Kebbi, Niger, Benue, Plateau, Bauchi, Jigawa, Taraba, Yobe, Delta, Abia, Ebonyi, Enugu, Ekiti and Ondo ? as well as the FCT.

According to reliable sources, the aspirants dispatched their campaign agents to scout for delegates’ support.

“The agents are wooing delegates with juicy offers including cash gifts ranging from N50,000 to N100,000 each. Some have offered to pay air transport fares while a particular aspirant has offered to place fully air conditioned luxury buses at strategic locations to ferry delegates to Lagos,” the sources revealed.

Atiku who has shown considerable dexterity, experience and tactics in his preparations for the presidential primary is said to be offering to assist delegates with accommodation where necessary.

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