2015: Buhari, APC settle for Redeemed Church Pastor as running mate —Party source

Posted by News Express | 17 December 2014 | 4,549 times

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All Progressives Congress (APC) presidential candidate, Gen. Muhammadu Buhari (rtd.), has finally accepted the choice of former Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice in Lagos State, Professor Yemi Osibajo, “whose name will be announced today as the party’s vice-presidential candidate,” according to a THISDAY report, quoting a party source.

Osibajo had earlier been proposed by his political godfather, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, the APC National Leader alongside Buhari but the APC presidential candidate reportedly preffered Rivers State Governor Rotimi Amaechi, who is believed to have been his major financier. Buhari had also argued that Osibajo lacks name recognition and that choosing a Pastor (Tunde Bakare) as running mate in 2011 did not help his (BUhari’s) electoral chances.

Buhari and the National Chairman of the APC, Chief John Odigie-Oyegun, were yesterday morning handed the task of choosing a running mate for the party from the array of candidates jostling for the office following the inability of Tinubu, who was interested in the post, to pick a running mate from the South-West zone.

“The leadership of APC met last night to settle for Osibajo,” THISDAY said. It quoted an unnamed APC chieftain as explaining that the party had zoned the vice-presidential post to the South-West “and it was on this basis that it presented the highest number of candidates for Buhari to choose from, before he selected Osibajo from the pack.

“He said by picking Osibajo as his running mate, Buhari was adhering to the arrangement, which zoned the vice-presidency to the South-west, in line with the pre-merger arrangement that led to formation of APC.

“Under the arrangement, the North-West geopolitical zone and the South-west were recognised as the two largest voting blocs in the country and were therefore expected to produce the presidential and vice-presidential candidates of the APC.”

According to a party source, Osibajo was selected because he is a pastor of the Redeemed Church, whose Christian congregants Buhari and the APC are targeting in the 2015 presidential election.

He named other prospective candidates who were considered yesterday to include Olagunsoye Oyinlola, Niyi Adebayo and Kayode Fayemi – all former governors from the South-West zone – as well as Senator Olorunnimbe Mamora. Lagos Governor Babatunde Fashola reportedly withrew, citing fatigue.

Buhari had been expected to announce his running mate after emerging the APC candidate last Thursday but party leaders failed to agree on the issue.

All political parties have till the end of today to submit the name of candidates vying for various political offices to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

Source: News Express

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