Published November 1, 2018
A national leader of the ruling All Progressives Congress, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, has said he and other party chieftains are not moved by the decision of the presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, Atiku Abubakar, to hold strategic meetings in Dubai ahead of the 2019 elections.
Tinubu spoke with State House correspondents shortly after meeting behind closed doors with President Muhammadu Buhari at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
He said his meeting with the President was about the nation, Nigerians, peace, stability and economic progress.
He expressed the conviction that Nigerians would not want to return to the deplorable state into which the PDP plunged the country.
“We don’t fear, whether he (Atiku) is meeting in the jungle, in Dubai or in Abu Dhabi.
“People are free to meet and strategise in any way they felt, but we are not going back to the illusion of the PDP. It is not possible, Nigerians will not do that.
“They say slow and steady wins the race. We inherited that from our forefathers and knowledgeable people.
“We can’t go back to the pit that we inherited for 16 years. They can strategise from anywhere, but a leopard cannot change its skin,” he added.
Tinubu also faulted the calls by some party chiefs including state governors for the removal of the party’s National Chairman, Adams Oshiomhole.
When asked if he was in support of the call for Oshiomhole’s removal, the former Lagos State Governor said, “No! We all have to respect party supremacy.
“You were all here when we had the congress. We elected the new executives. We had the convention and the NEC was formed.
“We surrendered to avoid conflict, domination, abuse of power.
“We surrendered our rights, all rights, to the National Working Committee headed by Adams Oshiomohole, that the NWC should set up electoral bodies to supervise various state congresses and elections. We signed off for it.
“So, if it is not in our individual favour, so be it. We gave three options: consensus. Where there is no consensus because you are more than two or three and you cannot agree on one candidate, you go to the next level.
“The next level is the stakeholders’ delegate and you have to be supervised by the National Working Committee of the party, national election committee of the party. That shows party supremacy.
“The freest option, the less cumbersome is direct primary; line up and count the number – one, two and three. If you win, you win and if you fail, go home.
“Then an appeal committee was set up to listen to all appeals, internal mechanism for conflict resolution. It was there, you cannot turn against that. You cannot turn against all of that. No!
“Party is supreme. Party must be respected. Abuses will not do it and anger will not do it. It is party politics, somebody will win and somebody will lose, too bad.”