The President of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan, has made a passionate appeal to the 2,322 national delegates of the All-Progressives Congress (APC), to vote for him as the presidential candidate of the party next week during the party’s presidential primary.
Lawan made the appeal in Abuja on Wednesday through an open letter to the 2,322 national delegates, urging them to ignore aspirants with baggage.
He admonished them to choose a person that would lead and not rule Nigerians and “a leader with absolutely no baggage.”
The full text of the letter reads:
“My Dear APC Party Delegates,
Compliments of the season. Permit me to write to you through this medium. As we converge at this great time, in this great party to begin the journey of determining the future of this great nation, we must be cognizant of the fact that the fate of Nigeria fluctuates.
While democracy asserts that the Nigerian voting public determines the person to emerge as President, however in advance of that, the party delegates are saddled with the task of nominating the flag bearers. This communication is an appeal to all APC delegates as the party prepares for its presidential primaries.
I am reaching out to every single one of you APC delegates to plead with you to put ‘Nigeria First’ and give thought to the future of 215,763,437 (million) Nigerians, a lot of whom will appreciate the sagacious determination you will make during this process. I am reaching out to you, with humility, to ask for your votes so that I can emerge as the APC Presidential flag bearer for the 2023 Nigerian Presidential election.
At this point, it is not lost on me that we must come together as one party and as one nation, for we have a great deal to mend, rehabilitate, reinstall and so much more to achieve. We have a unique chance to measure up to every expectation and show Nigeria and the world that Democracy triumphs. And that journey shall start during the APC Presidential Primary Election process.
To all delegates across Nigeria, I beseech you to put pecuniary and monetary incentives aside and seriously consider what is ‘in the greater good.’ As you make your decision in picking the flag bearer of our party, I urge you to seek a leader and not a politician. I ask you to choose a person that will lead and not rule Nigerians; one that will be understanding, tolerant, fair, honest, and progressive. A leader that comes with absolutely ‘No-Baggage.’
A vital component of any logical, efficient and authentic evaluation of a person involves assessing past behaviour. The key here is that one’s best predictor of future behaviour is past behaviour. If one has always done something a certain way, they are likely to do that same thing in the same manner in the future. The same goes for how one navigates or pillages in leadership. Thus, as you, the delegates, are determining the APC party presidential flag bearer, it is important to look at past behaviour to elicit what behaviours, avarice and rapacity candidates have exhibited in the past. It is important for you to access all candidates along with this parameter.
Dear delegates, look for a leader that will not buy your votes but one that is prepared to sell and deliver your dreams. I promise you that I will be that leader. I am prepared to offer you myself and my heart; my integrity, my dedication and my might. I want to offer you a dream of justice for all, a dream of uniting to fight the foes we face, a dream of unity under one single ideal, common purpose, common endeavour and resolve; a dream to right the wrongs of our past, a dream of work, employment, functioning safe schools, security, electricity, infrastructure, stable economy, compassion for the citizenry, technology, opportunity and so much more than Nigerians desire.
I will give you my all, thinking not of power, but of possibility and the public good. I want you to take my hand so that together, we can show the Nigerian story of hope, unity, tolerance, healing, principle, greatness and goodness. I want you to take my hand so that together we can learn from history, embrace faith and find a way to unify Nigeria and take her into the future. We are at an extraordinary historic moment both in APC and in Nigeria and our unity is the path forward.
Dear delegates, I give you my word, I will defend the constitution. I’ll defend our democracy. I will defend Nigeria. I will defend every single Nigerian from every nook and cranny, across the length and breadth of the nation and from every corner. I commit to defending all 371 spectacular tribes existing in this brilliant, colourful, diverse and beautiful nation.
This and nothing more than this is what we owe to our forefathers, this is what we owe to each other and this is what we owe to the generations that will follow behind us; to our children and our children’s children.
Dear APC delegates, you have the sacred mission at this hour of history, during this hour of the decision of taking this country to a plain beyond. I urge you to assist me in uniting Nigeria in our common desire to move forward together.
We shall meet on the voting field as members of Africa’s largest party and as Nigerians united in our resolve to remain the most vibrant party in Africa and one of the greatest nations on earth. We shall meet on the voting field to tell the positive tale of Nigeria. While this is expected of every Nigerian, it starts with you, the APC delegates.
I give you my word that I shall not fail you. To this end, I ask for your precious votes and your dedication to our party, APC, and to our motherland. I give you my word that, given the privilege of carrying the APC Presidential ticket, I will represent you with pride, courage, equity, endurance, faith, conviction, and devotion to you all and the country we love with all our hearts. I give you my word that I will strive to take the APC presidential ticket nomination you will hopefully give to me and turn it into a landslide win in the 2023 general elections.
Al-Haji Sir Ahmadu Bello, Chief Obafemi Awolowo, Dr. Nnamdi Azikiwe, Al-Haji Sir Abubakar Tafawa Balewa, Herbert Macaulay, Professor Eyo Ita, Alvan Ikoku, Chief Anthony Enahoro, Sir Egbert Udo Udoma, Al-Haji Aminu Kano, Chief S. A. Ajayi, Joseph Tarka, Chief Sunday Awoniyi, Dennis Osadebay and all the other great men that founded, made and preserved this great Republic are looking down and smiling fondly at every single one of you as you take your place in history in duty and service of your great party and ultimately, your nation.
May you all be protected and directed through wisdom as you journey to the presidential primary election to speak for yourself, your family, your generation, your future, your state and Nigeria.
May the Almighty be with you as you make the best decision for the future of Nigeria.
Recall that the ruling APC will between June 6-8 at a special convention elect the party’s flagbearer in the February 25, 2023, Presidential election.
Among those that are jostling for the party’s presidential ticket are; the Vice-President, Prof Yemi Osinbajo; the APC National Leader, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu and the Ebonyi State Governor, Dave Umahi, Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi; a former Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Godswill Akpabio; former Minister of Science, Technology and Innovation, Dr Ogbonnaya Onu; a former Imo State governor, Senator Rochas Okorocha and former Ogun State Governor, Senator Ibikunle Amosun.
Others are Pastor Tunde Bakare, the Cross River State Governor, Prof Ben Ayade; his Ekiti State counterpart, Dr Kayode Fayemi, an ex-Minister of State, Education, Emeka Nwajiuba, former President of the Senate, Senator Ken Nnamani; Kogi State Governor, Yahaya Bello; Jigawa State governor, Mohammed Badaru and former Zamfara State governor, Senator Ahmed Yerima, Senator Ajayi Borroffice; the only female aspirant, B. Uju Kennedy Ohanenye, Pastor Nicholas Felix Nwagbo; former Speaker of Representative, Dimeji Bankole; former Minister of Information, Chief Ikeobasi Mokelu and Mr Tein Jack Rich.
Whoever emerges as the APC’s candidate will slug it out with Atiku Abubakar, the flagbearer of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP); Peter Obi, Labour Party’s candidate and Rabiu Kwankwaso, the candidates of the New Nigeria Peoples Party and others.