The National Chairman of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), Chief John Odigie-Oyegun, has revealed plans by the leadership of the party to prevail on President Muhammadu Buhari to seek a second term by contesting the 2019 presidential election.
We Will Make Sure Buhari Run Again In 2019 - APC National Chairman
Though the election is still more than two years from now, and Buhari is yet to make any official pronouncement on his plan, Oyegun said that the party’s leadership will do everything possible to ensure that the president contests the election.
Oyegun hinged this decision on two factors. One, he said the president is the only politician in Nigeria today that has the capacity to win 12 million votes without major campaign. Two, Buhari, he said, is the only man who has the courage to make the changes that Nigeria need.
According to him, “There is no another Buhari in this country. Buhari is the only man who can command 12 million votes even without any major campaign. So, you can see the picture. Yes, there will be changes, the party will get new members or lose a few members, but there is no Peoples Democratic Party (PDP). So, there is no strong party any more to say you are going to join and strengthen it. It is only APC that is really a strong party.”
Oyegun added that he would commit Buhari’s second term project to prayer.
His words: “I will pray, fast to God that Buhari agrees to contest in 2019. If he contests, Nigeria will be better for it.
“My prayer is that we can get Buhari to re-contest in 2019. We don’t know his mind yet, but I will do anything in my power to ensure that he re-contests in 2019. Why? He is the only one who has the moral front and the courage to make the changes that Nigeria needs.
“We need more than four years to get this country to subscribe to a new morality, a new ethic and turn its back on corruption of the very type we are trying to uproot now.”
When asked if he is convinced that the APC would win the election given the disenchantment over the party at the moment, Odigie-Oyegun said: “Of course, APC will win.”
The national chairman of the governing party ruled out the possibility of the PDP bouncing back in 2019.
He, however, did not rule out the possibility of some members of the APC aligning with others to form a new party ahead of the next election, but insisted that they will not make any impact.
His words: “APC has come to stay. As at today, strictly speaking there is no other party in the country. It is possible that a few people within the APC might join others to form other party, but a party doesn’t grow in one day to win an election. So, APC will continue to be the strongest and the largest political party in Nigeria for quite a while, because you don’t form a party today and win an election tomorrow.”