Former Military Head of State, Ibrahim Badamosi Babangida (IBB), and Northern Elders of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, have endorsed the Governor of Bauchi State, Bala Mohammed and former Senate President, Bukola Saraki as the northern consensus candidates of the party.
This decision was reached on Friday, following a meeting held at IBB’s country home in Minna, Niger state.
Speaking to journalists shortly after, Professor Ango Abdullahi explained that about four aspirants from the north presented themselves for the consensus.
They include Governor Aminu Waziri Tambuwal, Governor Bala Mohammed, Bukola Saraki, as well as Mohammed Hayatu-Deen.
However, he stated, “the purpose of this exercise, it is hereby resolved that Governor Bala Mohammed from the North East and former Senate President Bukola Saraki from the North Central be presented as the northern consensus candidates for the moment.”
Ango advised the two aspirants to work together to give room for further consultations to come up with one consensus candidate to ensure a peaceful primaries.
“Doing so will foster understanding among themselves and the PDP community to ensure a rancour free primaries in which all eligible candidates would be free to exercise their right.”
He also revealed that General Babangida opted for inclusion through wider consultation and assigned him to design a criteria and carry out the necessary consultations with elders and leaders in the three geopolitical regions in the north.
Speaking, Governor Mohammed told journalists that he and Saraki would meet to come up with one consensus presidential candidate to ensure unity for the north and Nigeria.
“We have reached an agreement to seek consensus so that we can close ranks and build unity for the north and Nigeria. We are happy that after due process and due consultation, involving the PDP Northern Elders Forum, I and Saraki have been chosen as Northern consensus candidates. We will go ahead and consult more among ourselves and bring out one candidate.”
Governor Mohammed further said that the consensus is the representation of the north and that discussions are on with other aspirants from the south.
The governor, however, added that other aspirants not endorsed are free to aspire if they desire, while thanking General IBB, the northern elders and other chieftains of PDP for having confidence in them.