2023: Northeast No Longer Atiku’s Stronghold, We Now Have Kassim Shettima On The Ballot – APC Youths Coordinator Declares
The Gombe State youth coordinator of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Lawal Bayero has declared that the northeast region is no longer a stronghold for the presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Atiku Abubakar.
Naija News reports that Bayero, who is also a member of the party’s Presidential Campaign Council (PCC) for the northeast told The Nation that the region use to be Atiku’s Stronghold when they didn’t have a northeaster on the ballot.
According to him, now that they have Kassim Shettima as the APC vice presidential candidate, then Atiku has lost his chances in the region.
Bayero noted that even though Atiku is coming from the region, it is time for the southerners to occupy the presidency and the northern youths are solidly behind the APC flag bearer Bola Tinubu.
The Gombe State APC youth maintained that just like the way youths in the region sold the change mantra of 2015 for President Muhammadu Buhari, they would sell Tinubu as well.
Bayero told The Nation that “Atiku is not a threat to Tinubu in the northeast and you can quote me on that. What has Atiku done for the region in his eight years reign as Vice President for the region? Look at Gombe-Yola road, it has been like that since Atiku’s time as Vice President. It is a shame to Atiku that the only major road that links his home state to other parts of the country is bad, not motorable and still remains like that.
“The northeast region used to be Atiku’s stronghold because there was no Northeasterner on the ballot but now with the emergence of Senator Kassim Shettima on the ballot, it will no longer be so.
“And again, even though Atiku is coming from the region but it is the turn of the south to occupy the Aso Rock villa since the North West is about rounding up the slot of the north and it is only just and fair for power to return to the south and who is that person, a lover of the northeast; someone that we have been very comfortable with and someone that we are sure we will be comfortable with when he gets to power; Asiwaju Bola Tinubu.
“I am so confident because I have never seen a lover of the northeast region like Bola Ahmed Tinubu. In 2007, we saw how he supported the current presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party PDP, Atiku Abubakar to emerge as the presidential candidate of the Action Congress and gave him the platform.”
The APC youth leader further stated that “Unfortunately he didn’t succeed. In 2011, he did the same thing with our brother from the same Adamawa state as Atiku, Malam Nuhu Ribadu, as the presidential candidate of the ACN 2011. In 2015, we all knew that without the support of Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu Action Congress of Nigeria, ACN, as the biggest coalition member of the APC, a Buhari Presidency may not be possible and he repeated it again in 2019 so today for us in the north it’s only fair for us to payback this man that has been a lover of the north.
“This is our payback time because he is a supporter of the North East. He has supported Atiku Abubakar from Adamawa state, supported Nuhu Ribadu from the same Adamawa state and picked Kassim Shettima from Borno state. I have never seen a bigger lover of the Northeast in the country than Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu.
“The North East used to be the stronghold of Atiku because there was no northeast person on the ballot but now with the emergence of Senator Kassim Shettima on the ballot, I don’t think the North East will continue to be his stronghold. Already, Borno and Yobe are in the kitty for us. Gombe, which used to be his stronghold, is now in the hands of Governor Muhammadu Inuwa Yahaya.
“He is not just the Governor of the state but also the North East Regional Director of the Presidential Campaign Council for Tinubu and Senator Kassim Shettima. So already we have three states in the region, because of the woeful performance of PDP in Taraba state everybody is praying for redemption. Already we have a very strong person in Taraba as the Governorship candidate and we are sure that he will deliver not just Taraba to himself but also to Asiwaju. Next is Adamawa and Bauchi which have been in the grasp of the PDP for four years.
“We all knew that we lost Adamawa and Bauchi due to the internal wranglings in APC and we are ready to put our house in order, we have met with critical stakeholders and they have vowed to work together for the victory of Asiwaju.”