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Buhari’s Supporters Considering Jonathan For 2023 Presidential Run

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Former President Goodluck Jonathan

Buhari supporters are considering backing former President Goodluck Jonathan for 2023 presidential run.

In a major political development fuelled by power intrigues and permutations, Buhari supporters are considering backing former President Goodluck Jonathan for 2023 presidential run.

The thinking is that it will satisfy the increasing clamour for power shift to the South. Buhari’s close loyalists believed that Jonathan would be harmless to their group interest and as such the right person to take over if power were to shift to the South, “he handed over power peacefully and nursed no bitterness against anyone and therefore will not be a threat to the interest of the north,” according to a top source in Buhari’s camp who didn’t want to be identified.

The attraction to Jonathan’s possible candidacy is that he will serve just one term of four years.

In a related development yesterday, the main opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), disclosed that it would not discriminate against any person in the build-up to the next presidential election on its platform, including a former Vice President, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, who the party said was free to take another shot in 2023.

According to multiple sources within the northern establishment spoken to by thisday, the idea of having Jonathan succeed Buhari is a very attractive preposition, “the former president is a good man, he did well in his first term and we believe he has learnt his lessons and where he failed and is unlikely to repeat those mistakes that cost him the presidency in 2015. He did alot for the North, so why not?”

Another source privy to the development also told THISDAY last night “yes we are looking at the Jonathan option, he is a safe bet and of course a very amiable gentleman, who is not likely to rock the boat.”

Thus, within the northern establishment, the consensus is beginning to gain momentum, with Buhari’s loyalists pushing the button to have Jonathan succeed their boss.

Checks also showed a growing number of influential northern leaders of thought are favourably disposed to the idea of Jonathan’s second coming.

This is particularly because a majority of those, who have bought into this idea, were of the view that the former president represented the shortest route for the north to regain power.

By virtue of the provisions of the 1999 Constitution as amended, one can only be sworn in as president for two terms of four years, although Jonathan too had also taken the oath of office twice.

Those supporting Jonathan reason that if another southerner emerges, more so a young candidate, he is likely to spend eight years in office before power returns to the north.

The north, and Buhari in particular are said to be impressed with the way Jonathan conceded defeat and proceeded to hand over power, when he lost the 2015 election and the way he has since conducted himself out of power.

Multiple sources told THISDAY that Buhari and his loyalists have over the years come to see Jonathan as someone, who is trustworthy and dependable, and to whom he could hand over power in 2023.

For instance, they also point at the growing friendship and bond between both men, as Buhari on many occasions, had expressed his astonishment at the way Jonathan conceded defeat and praised him as a statesman.

One of such occasions was in January 2018, Buhari at a dinner for top members of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) at the presidential villa in Abuja had said he went temporarily into a coma when former President Goodluck Jonathan called him to concede defeat in the 2015 presidential election.

He had said then he felt Jonathan had stayed long enough in office to have caused problems when he lost the election. He described the former President’s decision to accept defeat as a “great” one.

“When the former president rang me, I went temporarily into a coma,” the president said.

“I will never forget the time. It was quarter past 5 p.m. and he said he called to congratulate me and that he had conceded.

“He asked if I heard him, and I said yes. I thanked him for his statesmanship,” he said.

“The truth is after being a deputy governor, a governor, vice president and president for six years, and he took that decision is great. He could have caused some problems. He had stayed long enough to cause problems.”

In 2015 after losing the election, in an unprecedented step, Jonathan had called Buhari to concede defeat and issued a statement the following after conceding, urging his supporters to accept the result. He urged his supporters to follow “due process” in channeling their frustrations at losing the election amid fear of violence. He re-echoed his now famous statement during the 2015 campaign that his his ambition was not worth the blood of any Nigerian.

“Nobody’s ambition is worth the blood of any Nigerian,” Jonathan said in a statement issued after his election defeat. “The unity, stability and progress of our dear country is more important than anything else.”

These loyalists of the president have further cited the fact that Jonathan was the only former head of state with Buhari during the 60th independence anniversary celebration of the country at the Eagle Square, Abuja.

ThisDay

CEO/Founder Investors King Ltd, a foreign exchange research analyst, contributing author on New York-based Talk Markets and Investing.com, with over a decade experience in the global financial markets.

Government

Lawmakers Tensed Over Possible Boko Haram Attack On National Assembly

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Lawmakers have been notified of a possible attack by Boko Haram insurgents on the National Assembly complex and other public buildings in Abuja, The media gathered.

Several members of the House of Representatives, on Wednesday, confirmed to Punch correspondent that they had been notified of the imminent attack by the terrorist group.

One of them, who is from a state in the South-West, said his presence would henceforth be limited on the premises.

“That is the security alert I saw today. I’m already moving out of here. I’ll only be around when there is a major reason to do so. Nowhere is safe in the country anymore,” he said.

Already the notice of the impending attack has been made available to the lawmakers.

The notice, a copy of which our correspondent obtained, was sent to the Speaker, Femi Gbajabiamila, other principal officers and all members of the House.

The ‘security alert’, dated May 4, 2021, was issued by the Chairman of the House Committee on Internal Security, National Assembly, Mr. Usman Shiddi.

It was titled ‘Re: planned insurgent attacks on VIP locations, government facilities and assets in Abuja.’

The alert read, “I refer to the above subject of which a copy of the intelligence report from the Force Intelligence Bureau of the Nigeria Police Force in the National Assembly Complex has been made available to my office.

“The report indicates planned insurgent attacks by some elements of Boko Haram on some VIP locations, government facilities and assets in Abuja, including the National Assembly complex.

“In view of the above intelligence, I have considered it paramount to advise that all members should, henceforth, use the presidential gate for ingress and egress.

“This is to avoid the unforeseen congestions that are sometimes encountered at the main gates since such congestions could easily be the targets for these insurgent elements.

“Security agencies are, however, actively on top of the issue to unravel and to contain the intended menace. Accept the assurances of my highest regards, please.”

Security has been beefed up in and around the complex since Thursday last week.

For the first time, security operatives on that day checked vehicles entering the premises, causing traffic congestion especially at the third (and last) gate, a process that has continued to date.

Before now, the security operatives were only after the identities of drivers and passengers to confirm that they were staff members, legislative aides, journalists, or persons working in private businesses in the complex.

The media correspondent observed that soldiers joined the regular sergeants-at-arms and men of the Nigeria Police Force, Department of State Services, Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps and the Federal Road Safety Corps that manned the gates.

Recall that the Governor of Niger State, Sani Bello, had on April 26, 2021, raised the alarm over Boko Haram terrorists taking over a part of the state, hoisting their flag in Kaure village from where they had made incursions into more than 50 villages.

Bello said Abuja was not safe, with Boko Haram’s presence in Kaure – a two-hour journey from the Federal Capital Territory.

He said, “I am confirming that there are Boko Haram elements here in Niger State. Here in Kaure, I am confirming that they have hoisted their flags here.”

The same day, Gbajabiamila had met with the President, Muhammadu Buhari at the Presidential Villa, in company with the Majority Leader, Alhassan Ado-Doguwa.

On the next day, the House held a long executive (closed-door) session to discuss the rising spate of insecurity across Nigeria, calling on Buhari to declare a state of emergency on security.

At the secret session that lasted over three hours, the lawmakers unanimously adopted a series of resolutions, one of which was that “the Federal Government should ensure the protection of national infrastructure and assets, particularly the Shiroro and Kainji Dams in Niger State.”

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Lagos State Plans To Launch 500 Small New Buses Next Week

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sanwo-olu

The Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, has promised to introduce 500 small new buses to the state by next week Thursday in a bid to provide alternatives to local motorcycles.

The Governor said this in a speech on Wednesday to mark the opening ceremony of the Lagos Architect Forum. The forum themed, ‘The City of Lagos: The Next Twenty Five Years’ was organised by the Nigerian Institute of Architects, Lagos chapter, at the Expo Hall of Eko Hotel and Suites, Victoria Island.

The 4-day forum which will run till Saturday had in attendance other dignitaries including the Oniru of Iru Land, HRM Oba Abdulwasiu Omogbolahan Lawal; the Lagos State Chairman of the NIA, Arc. David Majekodunmi; SA to the Governor on Works and Infrastructure, Engr. Aramide Adeyoye; and the President-elect of the Nigerian Institute of Architects, Arc. Enyi Ben-Eboh.

In his speech, the governor noted the progress made in the T.H.E.M.E.S agenda and his vision for the Lagos master plan to ensure that Lagos becomes ‘Africa’s model megacity’ by 2050. Acknowledging the challenges in the transport sector, the Governor gave assurances on improving the various modes of transport including the roads, waterways and rail lines.

“For the waterways, we’re currently building 16 jetties and terminals. About seven of them should be ready before the end of the year; we have some that are already currently being used.

“All of them will not look as nice as the one at Falomo, but we want all of them to be comfortable. We have a fleet of almost 20 boats now each carrying 50, 60, 40 passengers. We want people to use the waterways which is why we’re investing in them,” Sanwo-Olu said.

On road and rail transport, Sanwo-Olu said the state would soon begin to operate 100 new high-capacity buses, with plans to launch 500 LASTMA small buses by next week Wednesday or Thursday as alternatives to okadas that don’t have enough passenger space. He also promised that one of either the blue or red rail lines will become operational by next year.

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Presidency Warns Over Alleged Plot To Overthrow Buhari’s Administration Through Vote of No Confidence

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Muhammadu Buhari

The Presidency on Tuesday claimed it has evidence that reveals that certain “disruptive elements” are recruiting ethnic groups and politicians with the motive of convening conferences where a vote of no confidence will be passed on the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari.

It said the purpose of the move was to further throw the country into turmoil.

The Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina, disclosed this in a statement titled ‘Our response to DSS alert, by Presidency.’

Adesina was giving further insights into a recent claim by the Department of State Services that some people were planning to undermine the government and the nation’s sovereignty.

The presidential spokesman however said the present regime would keep the country together, even if some unruly feathers would be ruffled in the process.

He claimed that some disgruntled religious and past political leaders are behind the plans.

The statement read, “The Department of State Services on Sunday alerted on sinister moves by misguided elements to wreak havoc on the government, sovereignty and corporate existence of the country.

“Championed by some disgruntled religious and past political leaders, the intention is to eventually throw the country into a tailspin, which would compel a forceful and undemocratic change of leadership.

“Further unimpeachable evidence shows that these disruptive elements are now recruiting the leadership of some ethnic groups and politicians around the country, with the intention of convening some sort of conference, where a vote of no confidence would be passed on the President, thus throwing the land into further turmoil.

“The caterwauling, in recent times, by these elements, is to prepare the grounds adequately for their ignoble intentions, which are designed to cause further grief for the country.

“The agent provocateurs hope to achieve through artifice and sleight of hands, what they failed to do through the ballot box in the 2019 elections.

“Nigerians have opted for democratic rule, and the only acceptable way to change a democratically elected government is through elections, which hold at prescribed times in the country. Any other way is patently illegal and even treasonable. Of course, such would attract the necessary consequences.

“These discredited individuals and groups are also in cahoots with external forces to cause maximum damage in their own country. But the Presidency, already vested with mandate and authority by Nigerians till 2023, pledges to keep the country together, even if some unruly feathers would be ruffled in the process.”

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