By Lawrence Olaoye
The National Secretary of the All Progressives Congress APC, Maimala Buni has disclosed that President Muhammadu Buhari remained the sole presidential candidate of the ruling party even though it would not stop other presidential aspirants from obtaining its nomination forms.
Briefing newsmen after the presentation of the forms to the President by the NCAN, the APC scribe, flanked by the Director-General of Buhari’s Campaign Committee and Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi and Chairman Buhari’s Campaign Media Committee, Festus Keyamo, SAN, said the NEC of the party had since endorsed the President and by extension, all members of the party have done so.
He said, “Once the National executive Committee NEC of the party passes a vote of confidence on the President, that President stands accepted because the NEC is the highest organ of the party and it met to take the decision, where every interest was represented so the National Executive Committee of the APC has passed a vote of confidence on our President and that means every APC member has endorsed him.”
The APC Secretary said Nigeria’s case was not exceptional because the same scenario obtains in advanced democracies.
“In advance democracy, ones the NEC of a party passes vote of confidence on the President, nobody contest against the President. The President has been accepted.”
He said that the President will be given the choice of first refusal and that as he had accepted the nomination form it meant that he was the party’s candidate in next year’s election.
Meanwhile, President Buhari has disclosed that many associations and organisations offered to buy the Expression of Interest and Nomination forms for him to contest on the platform of the ruling party, the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the 2019 general elections The President in his remarks while receiving the N45 million forms purchased for him by Nigeria Consolidation Ambassadors Network (NCAN) described those who dumped the ruling party for the opposition as having selfish expectations from the party.
Commenting on the forms presented to him by NCAN and others willing to purchase same for him, Buhari said “I am honoured today to receive this nomination form which your members, from all over the country, contributed to buy. It is a gesture from an association of patriotic Nigerians, which I was made to believe comprises over three million members that believe in our principle of bringing the desired positive CHANGE in Nigeria.
“Since my protest at the APC secretariat a few weeks back on the very expensive cost of the presidential nomination form, I have received many offers from different associations and organisations whose members were ready to pool their resources to buy me the form.
“The 12 million members of the Rice Farmers Association offered to buy me a form. The members of the Fertiliser Producers Association also contacted my office with the same offer. Some members of the Independent Petroleum Marketers Association also offered to buy the nomination form. I can go on and on.
“I am very touched by these gestures. And I want to assure you all that my commitment to our CHANGE agenda is as strong as ever.”
He continued “As I accept this nomination form from NCAN today, I want to ask all the other groups who have offered to buy my nomination form to redirect their contributions to the Not Too Young To Run wing of the APC.”