Ahead of the 2023 presidential election,some leaders in the 19 northern states of the country including the All Progressives Congress, APC, Christian stakeholders in the region aligned to the former Speaker of the House of Representatives, Hon. Yakubu Dogara,have adopted the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar as their preferred choice.
The political stakeholders, led by Dogara, declared their support for Atiku, at a meeting held Friday night in Abuja.
The adoption of Atiku was contained in the report of the group operating under the aegis of Northern Leaders Technical Criteria Committee, NLTCC, released to members of the group during the meeting.
The report, signed by the committee’s chairman, Hon.Mohammed Umara Kumalia and secretary,Barrister Nunge Mele,SAN,was read by the former deputy governor of Kogi State,Simon Achuba at the event.
In the report,the group said:”After a careful evaluation of all the issues highlighted, we hereby recommend for the adoption of the PDP, to all lovers of democracy in Nigeria, for the 2023 presidential election.”
“However, this should be subject to getting the necessary assurance from the party to run an all-inclusive government, details of which shall be discussed with the leadership of the party in the nearest future,”the report read.
Commenting on the ruling All Progressives Congress, APC,the report said:”The seven and a half years of the APC government has engendered wide spread national perception of its inability to tackle security challenges and turn around the national economy.
“A further compounding albatross on its neck is the unfortunate self-inflicted divisive same-faith-ticket which cannot guarantee the desired peace, unity and cohesion in Nigeria, a decision that has been kicked against by a huge population of Nigerians.
“The perception that the APC Presidential candidate has some health challenges makes people very uncomfortable. There is the fear that it may precipitate a situation where unelected surrogates will be running the government while the president is left attending to his health.
“On account of the above, the party is likely to face a backlash or may not escape a backlash that will lead to its defeat at the polls in 2023. “
Also, commenting on the Labour Party,the report read:””From the existing structure of the Labour Party and even from the records of Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, as it stands for 2023 elections, even if all their candidates win in the 2023 elections, can the party still produce the President? Very unlikely indeed.
“Assuming without conceding that they even produce the President, can they (LP) run the government? Not likely. The results of 5 and 6 above will be to form a minority Government with devastating effect on National political stability further impelling the fragile health of our Country.
“Furthermore, there is no way a keen political observer will not see that there is a major disconnect between Peter Obi as a candidate and Labour,which is indicative of the fact that he is not running a collegial political structure in a diverse country like Nigeria.
“It is, however, respectively observed that LP is a party to be watched in the future only if it sustains the tempo and maintains the mass movement while at the same time building up its structures towards subsequent elections.
“The NNPP on the other hand has similar characteristics with the LP and there is no need repeating same except that ~ NNPP appears to be building a party for the future with – little or no impact in the 2023 elections. “