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Tinubu Convinced Obasanjo To Accept Buhari As APC Candidate In 2015 – Akande

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Bisi Akande Reveals How Buhari's Regime Maltreated Southern, Christian Politicians

Former National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC) Chief Bisi Akande has revealed a political masterclass that happened in 2015.

In his autobiography titled “My Participations,” launched in Lagos on Thursday, Akande said the APC National Leader, Bola Tinubu, had to convince former President Olusegun Obasanjo before he supported the candidacy of President Muhammadu Buhari in 2015.

He said Tinubu had to tell Obasanjo to speak to Buhari about his views about the latter’s ambition, adding that some Northern elites opposed Buhari’s presidential ambition.

Akande said, “When the party was ready and we were going around to all the leaders, someone reminded us that we had not seen Obasanjo and (former Head of State, Ibrahim) Babangida, and asked them to join us.

“We also met Obasanjo and asked him to join us. He said he would not join us but that he had his sympathy for us. He said he had decided not to join any political party since he left the Peoples Democratic Party.

“Behind the scene, however, I understood he was pressurising some of our leaders not to use Buhari as our candidate. It got to a point when Bola Tinubu had to confront him thus: ‘It is not fair sending me to Buhari. Buhari was a soldier and he was one of your junior officers in the army. Why don’t you call Buhari and let him know how you feel about his intention to be President?’

“I don’t know whether Obasanjo stopped at it. From the start, he did not want Buhari to be President.”

Akande disclosed that a Northern leader also met with the former Governor of Osun state and Minister of Interior, Rauf Aregbesola, to persuade him to prevail on the APC leaders to drop Buhari.

He, however, said the APC decided to present Buhari as its flagbearer given his charisma and the support he had receved in his previous attempts.

He said: “It was apparent from the start that Buhari would be our choice for president. That was one of the bases for the merger. However, there were pressures from the elites, especially from the North, including royal fathers, piling pressure on us not to allow Buhari be our presidential candidate.

“A prominent aristocratic leader from the North stayed several nights in Osogbo, persuading Governor Aregbesola to prevail on us not to field Buhari. He threatened that if we did, there would be trouble in the North.

“Buhari had been losing elections before because he had no structure to harness his support and transform it into votes.

“Now through the APC, we had created a formidable structure for him; bigger and better than that of any other party in Nigerian history.”



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