Adamawa PDP Guber Aspirants Gang Up Against Ribadu
The aspiration by the former Chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC), Mallam Nuhu Ribadu to govern Adamawa State, one that necessitated his movement from the All Progressives Congress (APC), to the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), may be in serious jeopardy as other aspirants for the top job have resolved to frustrate his ambition.
Ribadu had, on August 16, announced his defection from the All Progressives Congress (APC) to the PDP. He obtained the party’s governorship nomination form on Tuesday, three days after he joined the party.
But before Ribadu joined PDP, several other aspirants had indicated interest to run for the governorship under the platform of the PDP. These aspirants now see Ribadu as a big threat and so they have resolved to do everything possible to jeopardize his ambition.
Prominent among the aspirants jostling for the ticket are a former Minister of State for Health, Dr. Idi Hong; Adamawa State Acting Governor, Umar Fintiri and former political adviser to the President, Ahmed Gulak.
Also in the race are a former Executive Secretary of the Universal Basic Education Commission (UBEC), Dr. Ahmed Moddibo; son of the immediate past national chairman of the PDP, Awwal Tukur and former Lagos State Military Administrator, Brig.-Gen. Buba Marwa.
It was gathered that the 13 aspirants and their backers are said to have cautioned the leadership of the PDP and the Presidency of the dire consequences of ceding the ticket to Ribadu through a consensus arrangement.
They have not only ruled out consensus option through which Ribadu is expected to emerge as the party’s flag bearer, they have also insisted on having a free and transparent primary election with a level play ground for all the contestants in the race.
A highly placed power broker at the Presidency said on Friday that the permutations on the Ribadu candidature have continued to take new dimensions, with new calculations emerging from the various camps.
The source, who craved anonymity, said: “The race in the coming days is likely to be very interesting, but we have all resolved to be very careful because in politics, you cannot take chances, especially ones that are likely to jeopardise the chances of your party.
“When the issue of Ribadu first came up, some indices which we are witnessing now had not come up then. For instance, no one knew that the Acting Governor was going to be interested in the race.
“Also, the impression was created that all other aspirants were going to step down for him (Ribadu) on the intervention of a mutual friend of most of them who brought the Ribadu option.
“But right now, the President has insisted that he cannot support any of the aspirants against others since there appears not be a consensus among them; more so that the hurdles we thought could be cleared for Ribadu are not just there but they are still waxing stronger. “So, the situation as it is now, means that all the aspirants would have to carry their various ambitions on the strength of their structures because it is obvious we cannot afford to toy with Adamawa.
“The former Vice President Atiku Abubakar is from there and there are intelligence reports that he is waiting in the wings to lure any of the PDP aspirants with the APC ticket in case we force them to step down for Ribadu.
“But far more fearful is the fact that some of the aspirants, we learnt, are already ganging up to raise a legal issue out of the manner in which Ribadu registered as a member of PDP.
“The truth is that Ribadu was not expected to register through a proxy. We expected him to go to his state and do such personally. But now, our problem is simple- what if any of the aspirants heads to court and insists that Ribadu did not join the PDP through due process? It is really intriguing, I can say for now.
“So with all these developments coming up daily, Mr President has instructed that no one should brandish his name on the issue any longer, especially as it affects the issue of Ribadu.
“We all thought the deal could sail through, but from all indications, we at the level of the party’s apex leadership and the Presidency have to be very cautious on this matter because we cannot afford to entrap our party for the sake of an individual.”
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