Presidential aspirants of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) in the lead up to the 2023 presidential election have agreed to float a forum to mobilize support for President Bola Tinubu as part of measures to tackle the challenges confronting the nation.
They have consequently dropped any presidential ambition ahead of 2027.
Some of the APC presidential aspirants in the last election are former Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, Ahmad Sani Yarima, Chief Rotimi Amaechi, Dr Nicolas Felix, Dr Kayode Fayemi, Senator Ibikunle Amosun, Owelle Rochas Okorocha, Senator Abubakar Atiku Bagudu, Gov. Yahaya Bello, Engr. Dave Umahi, Chief Ogbonnaya Onu, Senators Ahmad Lawan and Godswill Akpabio among others.
Convener and Acting Chairman of the Forum, Senator Yarima as well as APC’s youngest presidential presidential aspirant, Dr Nicholas Felix disclosed this in a statement issued Saturday in Abuja.
… Fix dinner for Monday
To this end, the aspirants have fixed an end of year dinner for Monday at the Transcorp Hilton Hotel in Abuja where the forum will be officially inaugurated.
In the aftermath of the APC presidential primary election, there were reports that a few of the aspirants had decided to not support the party’s candidate, Tinubu, who later emerged as president.
Meanwhile, Yarima and Felix in the statement said; “Today, as a people and country, we are faced with myriads of socio-economic problems and we believe that we can only surmount them when we come together, irrespective of our religious, ethnic and even political differences to face these challenges head on.
“It is therefore on this premise that all the Candidates in the 2023 APC Presidential primary have decided to come together under one umbrella to mobilise support for our President, Bola Ahmed Tinubu, and his Renewed Hope Administration playing advisory role to enable him succeed and transform this great nation.
“Basically, the objective of the forum is to ensure that we come together solidly to support President Tinubu’s administration having surrendered all our individual interests and collapsed same to support the emergence of President Tinubu.
“As critical stakeholders, we have decided that it is not not enough to sit back behind the scenes but to come out and mobilise support for the government’s policies and programmes.
“This forum from time to time will play an intermediary role of ensuring that all the policies and programmes of the government are well disseminated down to the people especially the grassroots.
“To fully stay on track, the forum will push to constantly have direct engagements with the President as a way of feedback mechanism and at same time, render possible advice where necessary.
“This forum will leverage on our individual and collective international contacts to ensure that the Nigerians in diaspora are adequately informed and mobilised to giving the President a rousing welcome. We will always go ahead and to make adequate preparations in this regards.
“Also, this forum will be there as rallying point for all former presidential candidates in the February 2023 presidential election.
“We will endeavour to invite the President to our quarterly meetings so as to share our minds one on one with him.
“Also, this forum has laid all the framework to ensure that members’ political and economic interests are well protected using the strength of the forum. We will stand by and for all members at all times. It is an all for one and one for all forum”.
The statement added that those who were earlier nursing a presidential ambition ahead of 2027 have agreed to drop same and support President Tinubu for a second term.
“Because we are committed to the success of President Tinubu and his administration; all members who hitherto had Presidential aspirations have all agreed to drop such even ahead of 2027 so as to pave a smooth sail for President Tinubu to seek a second tenure. This project we are already working on and will leave no stone unturned.
“This forum will also take steps to see how to reach out to Presidential candidates of all other political parties for a harmonious working relationship in the interest of the development of the country as we believe that electioneering periods are over and it is time for all hands to be on deck.
“This Forum will have its meetings on quarterly basis and thereafter, also seek an audience with the President to brief him first hand.
“Finally, we want to thank all Nigerians and crave for patience with strong convictions that the President relying on his vast experience and antecedents is working very hard to turn the fortunes of the country around,” the statement added. (Vanguard)