National Chairman of All Progressives Congress (APC), Senator Abdullahi Adamu, and other prominent party leaders, on Tuesday, visited the president-elect, Bola Tinubu, who returned to the country on Monday after a month stay in France.
Tinubu had gone to take a rest after an exhausting presidential campaign, which culminated in the election on February 25.
Other APC leaders on the national chairman’s entourage during the visit included Speaker of the House of Representatives, Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila; Ekiti State Governor Biodun Oyebanji; Senators Godswill Akpabio, Jibrin Barau, Olamilekan Adeola, Opeyemi Bamidele, Emma Bwacha, and Tokunbo Abiru; and Hon. James Faleke.
Indications, however, emerged from the visit that the party leadership might have decided on the zoning formular for the 10th National Assembly leadership, with the South-south allegedly penciled in for senate president while the North West is being considered for speakership.
Although details of the development have yet to be made public or concluded as discussions were still ongoing, there were other interests said to be pushing the North Central for speakership, based on their support during the presidential poll.
The visit to the president-elect had come amid uncertainty over the contest for principal offices of the incoming 10th National Assembly. The APC National Working Committee (NWC) appeared helpless in the face of an unwieldy number of aspirants jostling for the National Assembly leadership positions.
But it seemed the party has begun to make a headway with the purported agreement to zone the two most import offices – the senate presidency and speakership – to the south-south and north west respectively.
Meanwhile, the presidential candidate of Hope Democratic Party (HDP) in the 2019 general election, Chief Ambrose Owuru, yesterday, filed a fresh suit at the Court of Appeal, Abuja, against the swearing-in of the president-elect, some 33 days to May 29 handover date.
That was as the United States Department of the Interior, through the National Park Service, granted the request of protesters under the Coalition of Nigerian Organisations in the Americas, to demonstrate against the allegedly “flawed” conduct of the February 25 presidential election in Nigeria.
Tinubu returned to Nigeria from France on Monday after a month’s rest ahead of his inauguration on May 29.
Adamu, too, had been out of the country for about two weeks but resumed at the national secretariat of APC yesterday before heading to Tinubu’s house in Asokoro.
The APC national chairman resumed a day to the expiration of the seven days ultimatum given him last week by APC National Vice Chairman, North-west, Dr. Salihu Lukman, who threatened to drag him to court if he refused to convene the National Executive Committee (NEC) meeting of the party.
Although details of the meeting with Tinubu were still sketchy at the time of filing this report, it might not be unconnected with the zoning of leadership positions of the 10th National Assembly.
But the inability of the NWC to streamline the number of contestants by zoning the leadership positions of the 10th Assembly might have made the contest somewhat cumbersome.
At the moment, contestants for Senate President include Senator Barau Jibrin (Kano State, North-west); former governor of Zamfara State, Abdul Aziz Yari (Zamfara State, North-west); Senator Orji Uzo Kalu (Abia State, South-east); Senator Osita Izunanso (Imo State, South-east); Senator Godswill Akpabio (Akwa Ibom State, South-south); and Senator Sani Musa (Niger State, North-central).
Similarly, contestants for Speaker of the House of Representatives include Hon. Ahmed Idris Wase (Plateau State, North-central); Hon. Mukhtar Betara (Borno State, North-east); Hon. Abbas Tajudeen (Kaduna State, North-west); Hon. Sada Soli (Katsina State, North-west); and Hon. Aminu Jaji (Zamfara State, North-west).
Speaking with journalists after the meeting with Tinubu, Akpabio said his record qualified him for the 10th Senate presidency.
“My records will earn me the Senate presidency,” he boasted.
Nonetheless, the NWC of the party is scheduled to meet for its weekly meeting today. It is expected that the zoning of the leadership of the 10th National Assembly would be a key agenda at today’s meeting.