The Governor of Kano State and a presidential aspirant of the All Progressives Congress, Rabiu Kwankwaso, has said he is not under any pressure to step down for Maj. Gen. Muhammadu Buhari (retd.) and Alhaji Atiku Abubakar in the countdown to the 2015 presidential election.
Kwankwaso added that the APC was not a small party that the decision of who becomes its presidential candidate in next year’s presidential election would be taken in the bedroom of a party leader.
“I’m not under any pressure to step down for anybody. In fact, nobody asked me to step down for anybody and doing that will not be even good for the party.
“You see many people are used to either small parties or let me say medium-sized parties where people sit down and choose somebody in a room. Now we are talking about APC mega party which is not ANPP, CPC, APGA or ACN.
“It’s a collection of all and we always tell people to look at the example of the PDP. From 1999 to 2011, (for) each election they had to go for primary elections not arranged election but real elections,” he said.
The governor, who wrote on his Facebook page, on Wednesday, took a swipe at the Peoples Democratic Party, saying that the party had resorted to conducting its presidential primary in the Presidential Villa. This, he added, was an indication of PDP will lose the 2015 presidential election to APC.
Kwankwaso said, “Even when we have sitting presidents in 2003 and 2011, there were elections, serious elections. And that’s why the PDP has been winning all along and all others who were making arranged elections were losing elections.
“As fate would have it, now PDP has decided to do their own primary in the Villa and the APC is going to the field. That shows us clearly that APC will win and the PDP will lose election in 2015.”
According to the APC chieftain, since the party has a strong base, it should allow all its presidential aspirants to go round the country to campaign. This he said would bring in more supporters for the party.
“And that’s exactly what we are doing. In the last few weeks many people joined APC because of me and they will continue to join especially if I have a ticket,” the governor said about his campaign efforts.
He added, “Most of the guys in the PDP, the good ones, are my friends and certainly once I declare and get a ticket, they will cross over to APC or stay there and work for me. One of the advantages that I have is that it is not only APC that will vote, the PDP will also vote for me in the general elections.
If I win the primary election, I will be very happy and other contestants will work together, we are very close, all the three or four of us. And of course if anyone wins elections we will support him.”
He, however, urged the Independent National Electoral Commission to be an impartial umpire in the forthcoming presidential election.
“And that’s why we are saying to INEC and other people that they must not go and take dictations from the Villa and come out and write figures because that will not be acceptable.
“It was the issue of venue that made me to change the date of my formal declaration because they did not give us approval to use the Eagle Square. It is now going to be on the 28th of this month. We are still looking for venue but if they don’t give us we will declare on the streets of Abuja because most of the venues are owned by them,” Kwankwaso stated.