by Dare Lawal
Knowing how the various parties which came together to form the APC usually went about choosing their candidates, it is almost too good to be true to hear Dr. Kayode Fayemi, who is the chairman of the APC National Convention Committee, say this: “We are not going to a coronation. We are going to an election and that election is going to be done in the full glare of Nigerians.” But that’s exactly what he said yesterday after clearance certificates had been issued to all aspirants. Now all eyes will be on him and his committee.
The APC convention comes up on December 10th at the Teslim Balogun Stadium, Surulere, Lagos between December 10 and 11.
Fayemi said that although some of the aspirants expressed concern about traveling such a long distance for the convention, the committee convinced them on the choice of Lagos.
Fayemi was being coy about things. In reality, the opposition to the choice of Lagos by some of the aspirants including Atiku Abubakar, was not because of the distance, afterall delegates are not expected to trek to Lagos. The worry was that Lagos, being the base of APC leader, Bola Tinubu, might make things favourable to Tinubu’s choice candidate, Muhammadu Buhari.
Fayemi narrated the efforts made by the committee which screened the aspirants in order to ensure fairness and transparency.
“This is a very unique committee that has representations not just the people chosen by the leadership of the party, but also representations from the five aspirants that are running for the presidential ticket of our party. This is something that is being done transparently, with the input of their advice and their concerns being looked into.
“We are not going to a coronation. We are going to an election and that election is going to be done in the full glare of Nigerians.
“Those who are not opportune to be there as delegates but are interested in rescuing democracy in this country would have opportunity to watch it live on television, listen live on radio and follow us online and also be part of it internationally for those who are not in Nigeria as well as other Nigerians who are interested in seeing Nigeria get through these challenges through a process that is credible, transparent and acceptable to all.
“All our aspirants have also been briefed on the various steps we have taken. Our committee is holding our last meeting here in Abuja today and we are relocating to the venue of our convention from this moment,” he said.