2019: Cracks In Presidential Candidates’ Alliance Over Buhari’s Adoption
The alliance of 40 presidential candidates under the auspices of the Patriotic Forum of Presidential Candidates (PFPC), has collapsed over the surreptitious move by some of their leaders to adopt President Muhammadu Buhari for the 2019 elections.
Speaking on Thursday in Abuja during the meeting of a new alliance tagged Patriotic Presidential Forum (PPF), the Chairman of the forum and Presidential candidate of the Freedom and Justice Party (FJP), Dr. Onwubuya Breakforth, said the older forum collapsed due to the planned adoption of President Buhari, contrary to the spirit of the forum.
While he refused to name names, Daily Trust reliably learnt that, the Chairman of the PFPC and National Chairman of the Advanced Peoples Democratic Alliance (APDA), Alhaji Shittu Kabiru Mohammed, met with APC and Presidency officials on moves to adopt President Buhari.
Shittu however told Daily Trust that he would rather be on the part of patriotism and national interest than individual interests.
“This forum was formed with about 30 presidential candidates. We are looking at how we can have free and fair 2019 General Elections; engagement with INEC to ensure that INEC remains an unbiased umpire as it ought to be.
“Secondly to engage with various security agencies that they do not take side and remain neutral and also to engage the international communities like the UN, AU, EU, US and other embassies in Nigeria to beam their satellite to ensure that we have free, credible and violent-free election in 2019.
“At the end of the day, we want to be able to tell Nigerians that we are the third force. As individual candidates, we may not be able to favourably compete with the APC or PDP, but when we come together, as a strong force, we can be able to compete against the seemingly dominant parties and bigger brothers and salvage Nigeria.
“One of us who was the chairman of the PFPC derailed in choosing his alliance contrary to the spirit of the forum and the forum said no we cannot go with that form as it has been corrupted.
“As far as we are concerned, the other forum is no longer in existence as 90 percent of members of the other forum are here with us,” Breakforth said.
Also, the Vice Chairman of the new forum and Presidential candidate of the National Action Council (NAC) Hajiya Rabia Rakad Cengiz, said the forum will soon come out with details of its meeting and its resolutions.
When contacted on Thursday night, Alhaji Shittu Kabiru Mohammed, said the proponents of the new forum were free to make their choice in the spirit of democracy.
While he refused to directly respond to his reported adoption of President Buhari, he told Daily Trust that it would be better to be patriotic rather than forming another ‘third force’.
“For me, it is better to look at the interest of the nation first and do things that would make the country better and stronger,” he said.