Abuja—Eleven northern governors have backed a southern aspirant to emerge as the presidential candidate of the ruling All Progressives Congress( APC).
According to reports by Sahara Reporters, the announcement comes as President Muhammadu Buhari on Saturday night met 13 aspirants cleared to contest the party’s primaries on June 6-8 in Abuja.
As a result, the Jigawa State Governor, Abubakar Badaru, has withdrawn from the presidential race, according to a statement from the governors on Saturday night.
The governors who signed the statement include; Bello Masari, Katsina; Nasir El-Rufai, Kaduna; Atiku Bagudu, Kebbi; Simon Lalong, Plateau; Abdullahi Ganduje, Kano; Bello Matawalle, Zamfara; Inuwa Yahaya, Gombe; Babagana Zulum, Borno; Sani Bello, Niger; and Abdullahi Sule, Nasarawa.
The statement reads, “We, therefore, wish to strongly recommend to President Muhammadu Buhari that the search for a successor as the APC’s presidential candidate be limited to our compatriots from the southern states.
“We appeal to all aspirants from the northern states to withdraw in the national interest and allow only the aspirants from the south to proceed to the primaries.”
Apart from former Lagos State Governor, Bola Tinubu, and Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, other aspirants are the Senate President Ahmad Lawan and former ministers Rotimi Amaechi, Ogbonnaya Onu, Godswill Akpabio, and Chukwuemeka Nwajiuba.
Serving governors who are also aspiring to be president are Kayode Fayemi (Ekiti), Yahaya Bello (Kogi), Dave Umahi (Ebonyi), and Ben Ayade (Cross River), and Badaru Abubakar (Jigawa).
Others include former Senate President Ken Nnamani, former House of Representatives Speaker, Dimeji Bankole, and serving senators Ibikunle Amosun, Ajayi Boroffice, and Rochas Okorocha.