2019: Kwankwaso, Lamido presidential ambition divides Northern elders

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By Dare Raji

Following the declaration of former Governor of Kano State, Senator Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso, on Thursday in Anambra State to vie for presidency in the 2019 general election. NewsDirect learnt that his presidential ticket might meet with brick wall following the political scuffle with his erstwhile political godson and current Governor of Kano State, Governor Abdullahi Umar Ganduje, and the choice of Northern elders who are already championing for a consensus candidate ahead of the 2019 presidential election.

Recently at an event in Kano, Abdullahi Ganduje, said he is severing ties with the Kwankwasiyya movement, while ruling out the possibility of reconciling with the former governor.

He said “We have had enough of such vendetta, which had been raging with no end in sight. We have parted ways with Kwankwasiyya forever.

“They have erroneously believed and have been telling people that we are on the road to losing our seat in the 2019 general election. I find such a permutation laughable and a mere ranting of a wounded lion.”

Kwankwaso, has had a running battle with the incumbent governor following the disagreement between the two political juggernauts over cabinet appointments. It was alleged that Kwankwaso and his men fell shortchanged by Ganduje for shutting his men out on the list of political appointees in the state and the allegation of N379 billion debts which kwankwaso left after his tenure as governor of the state.

Kwankwaso dwindling political movement in Kano is an indicator that he might not get the political support in actualizing his ambition in the 2019 Presidential election as Kano state votes is a major requirement for any presidential candidate to emerge victorious at the poll. It should be recalled that Buhari got 1,903,999, from Kano State in the 2015 election while Dr. Goodluck Jonathan got 215,779 votes.

Kwankwanso’s presidential ambition faces another hurdle in APC as he might face a huge task of defeating and displacing President Muhammadu Buhari who might be seeking a second term in office despite calls from former President Olusegun Obasanjo advising him to take a deserved rest and not contest for the 2019 presidential election, and the purported letter written by Ex-Military Ibrahim Babaginda advising Buhari not to seek a second term in office.

NewsDirect gathered at the weekend that the Northern elders have set up a committee to shop for a credible candidate from the north other than President Muhammadu Buhari. It was learnt that Buhari and late President Umaru Yar’Adua, both from the Katsina, North West Nigeria, were not chosen by northerners but rather imposed on the North by certain powerful forces in the country.

Kwankwaso battles the for the presidency slot in the North will come with a strong resistance following the decision of former Governor of Jigawa State, Alhaji Sule Lamido, a strong ally of Obasanjo who is also interested in contesting under the People Democratic Party and Former Vice President Atiku Abubakar.

Following the word of Dr Bello Haliru Muhammed, a former Chairman of the People’s Democratic Party, PDP, it was concluded that the northern elders is seeking for a younger and credible candidate who can defeat President Muhammadu Buhari in 2019.

“We believe, there is an urgent need to hold a conversation amongst us with a view to devising practical strategies, options and choices in all matters relating to the 2019 general elections.

“We believe this should be encouraged, supported and vigorously pursued in order to produce a dynamic and committed political leadership that Nigeria so desperately needs at this juncture.”

The choice of the Northern elders will include the credibility of the candidate, and how the candidate can secure enough votes from Kano, Kaduna and Katsina states which were the states the incumbent President won massively in the 2015 election.