Some opposition candidates who participated in the 2023 presidential election have made an appeal to President Bola Tinubu to consider them for appointment in his government of unity.
The plea was made when the candidates, under the aegis of Forum of Concerned Presidential Candidates, paid a courtesy visit to the National Chairman of the ruling All Progressives Congress, Dr Abdullahi Ganduje, at the party secretariat in Abuja on Thursday.
The delegation comprised the presidential candidate of Action Peoples Party, Charles Nnadi; his counterpart in National Rescue Movement, Felix Osakwe; All Progressives Grand Alliance flag bearer, Prof Peter Umeadi, Action Democratic Party Vice Presidential Candidate, Dr Odey Udo and the leader of the team, Adewale Adeogun.
In his speech, Osakwe disclosed that they are not known to practice politics with bitterness, stressing that it was evident by their refusal to jump on the bandwagon of candidates dragging the president to the Presidential Election Petition Tribunal in the wake of the poll result.
Consequently, the NRM candidate demanded they be drafted into the campaign councils for the November 11 elections in Imo, Bayelsa and Kogi States, stressing that they are willing to offer their services to the president in the spirit of inclusive politics.
He said, “I feel Mr chairman you will be the right person to lead us to meet with Mr. President. So that we can air our own views in his presence and also to let him know that it is not all the presidential candidates that were against him. We chose not to go to court because this is Nigeria. We are here to thank you and God.
“The former presidential candidates are willing to offer our services to this country. We have a demand and it is for the party. That a slot in the campaign council for the Governorship elections should be made available to us. Those of us that have piloted this, we held a meeting. And we are asked to demand from you a presence in the campaign Council. We believed that our job is much more wanted now as we prepare to go into the polls in the three states in November.
We are here to submit two names to the chairman. And we believe by your power and by the special grace of God, it shall be done with your help. We will do our best to make sure that the three states that are going for the polls succeed. And with what we have been doing, we are going to mobilise our parties in those states for your party.”
Reacting, Ganduje applauded the team for putting for supporting the president’s ideology of inclusive politics and government of national unity.
The APC national chairman also reassured the delegation that he will present their demand to the president.
The former Kano governor also threw a jab at an undisclosed presidential candidate, who he claimed hijacked his party, which he subsequently converted to a revenue generation platform.
“I will convey your request and ensure that you see Mr President eye to eye. I thank you for being faithful to your respective parties. You are not like one political aspirant who became a presidential candidate by accident and by hijacking another party because he was partyless. He could not give account accordingly to INEC because it cannot qualify it to be a political party. He decided to hijack a political party. And since, he could not realise his aspirations he decided to make that party a revenue platform rather than a political party.
“He has now decided to even expel the founder. God forbids. He will not succeed. But I salute you presidential candidates for being good ambassadors of your own political parties, not destroyers of your own political parties and for not turning your political parties to your source of revenue. Since you cannot get the presidential tickets, you will get pocket ticket. I thank you. No doubt we will include you in the three states that we are having elections come November this year,” Ganduje reassured the delegation.