By Umar Muhammad Puma
The Buhari Group in the All Progressives Congress (APC) has opened a battle for automatic ticket for their candidate, a development that is rankling Atiku, Kwankwaso and Senator Saraki’s groups within the party.
A senior member of the party told newsmen at the weekend that the maneuvers by certain APC forces to make former military ruler, General Muhammadu Buhari the party’s presidential candidate in 2015 without going through an election is not going down well with Kwankwaso, Bukola and Atiku support groups within the opposition party.
Investigations by our correspondent who interacted with APC figures and members indicated that the attempt to foist the Buhari candidature on the party without following democratic process is likely to tear the party apart.
According to this informed APC insider, who didn’t want to be named because he had no authority to speak, however, admitted that any attempt to sideline other members of the party in the election of a presidential candidate would destroy the foundation and the credibility of the APC.
The informed insider said they were particularly worried by feelers from the Buhari camp who are insististing that the emergence of Buhari as a candidate “is a settled matter.”
The attempt at Buhari’s imposition was itself kick started by the former military ruler when, in an interview with Rariya, (an Hausa newspaper) and was culled by Premium Times and Peoples Daily, where he expressed open disagreement with the modified open direct primaries which has been adopted by the APC.
According to this insider, disregarding democratic process in the choice of party presidential flag-bearer could drag APC into deep “and possibly irreparable political damage.”
He explained that the idea of “automatic adoption” of Buhari or any other aspirant for that matter is undemocratic and would be resisted.”
The APC source warned that party members should not be reduced to “slaves and sheepishly expected to sign on the dotted lines when confronted with the nauseating idea of automatic ticket.”
The APC insider said those scheming for “automatic ticket” for Buhari “are probably PDP fifth columnists who want to drive a nail into the APC coffin.”
He explained that APC is bigger than individual members and that its credibility and commitment to democratic values must not be sacrificed on the altar of satisfying anybody’s stubborn ambition.”