Contrary to speculations making the rounds that the National leader of the All Progressives Congress, APC, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu’s directive that there would no longer be automatic ticket for all candidates of the party in the 2019 elections and by extension Governor Akinwunmi Ambode of Lagos State, was meant to scheme out the governor, might not be true after all. Tinubu, last week during a stakeholders meeting held at the secretariat of the party on Acme Road, declared that the party will not give automatic ticket to any aspirant, including the governor in the coming elections.
He said that all the aspirants will go through direct primaries to be decided by members of the party rather than the delegates system, which provides opportunity for a few to elect the party’s flag bearer. If anything, the directive that the candidates will be picked through direct primary is meant to ensure that bickering, complaints and acrimony which attend delegates conventions and congresses are eliminated.
Sunday Telegraph checks within the state government and the party reveal that the directive is to the advantage of the governor. “It will ensure that Governor Ambode wins as every party member who has his party membership card and the permanent voter’s card will vote for the governor,” said a source who craved for anonymity because he is not permitted to talk. Besides, our source said that the achievements of the governor is there to speak for him.
“Even at that, he is offered the first refusal, as the incumbent and for the sake of continuity.” Our source reminded the newspaper of the massive endorsements that the Governor has received and will continue to receive, adding that it is a testimony to the fact that he will win the primary.
“Every critical stakeholder and segments in the state have indicated that they want him to run for the second term. It is the same people that will vote for him and the party when the chips are down. So for the governor is unfazed by the direct primary.” On the alleged rift between Ambode and Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, a source in the party dismissed it with a wave of the hand saying, “How will Tinubu destroy the house which he built?
Remember he is the one who discovered him and stood by him against all odds. Ambode is a loyal party member and there is no reason for the two of them to quarrel”. On the perceived silence from the governor’s camp, an aide said: “No one can match the governor in terms of achievements. There is no rift between the governor and Asiwaju Tinubu. Forget about all the talks flying around. As soon as the party throws open the door for purchase of forms, Mr. Governor will purchase his. It is then he will declare for the race.”
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