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APC convention: The gladiators, contenders and the 2019 leadership challenge

By Austin Asadu
As the APC convention is set to roll off, the media publicity and sensationalism is trained on those contesting for numerous party positions and the ensuing controversy, intrigues and permutations, however it is germane to reflect on those heavyweights, topnotchers, contenders and aspirants for the party’s governorship, senatorial, house of representatives, house of assembly and other executive and legislative offices come 2019 as they equally posses the needed experience, competence, dedication and force of principle and conviction to positively affect the electoral fortunes of the party in the impending general elections.
SENATOR ABU IBRAHIM: The grassroots-oriented Chairman of the Senate Committee on Police Affairs is also the Chairman Board of Trustees of the Buhari Campaign Support Groups and is highly influential in the nation’s precincts of power and has been instrumental in propagating the anti-corruption, self reliant and economic diversification agenda of the President Muhammadu Buhari administration. Many political observers believe that he will seek his people’s mandate in the 2019 general elections so as to continue impacting crucial democratic dividends to them.
SENATOR MAGNUS ABE: The charismatic, result-oriented, purposeful and immensely popular chairman Senate Committee on FERMA has indicated his intention to contest for the Rivers State gubernatorial seat come 2019 and he has given the Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi, a run for his money in the battle for control of the Rivers APC machinery. Without a doubt, Senator Magnus Abe’s popularity dwarfs Rotimi Amaechi’s profile in Rivers State and beyond as the former has shattered all linguistic, ethnic, religious and sectional barriers in his avowed mission of uniting all Riverians under his epochal banner of One Rivers, One Destiny.
SENATOR HOPE UZODINMA: As Chairman Senate Committee on Customs, the political supremo initiated several high profile prober that unearthed massive corruption, administrative malfeasance and diversion of public funds to private pockets in the Service and he was able to recover billions of naira back to the nation’s coffers while indicting key customs officers as well as clearing agents, importers & exporters. His dramatic entry into the APC has changed the political dynamics of Imo State and irrevocably altered the permutation of Governor Rochas Okorocha and his clique of cronies and acolytes.
SENATOR IBRAHIM GOBIR: Acclaimed as the Most Transparent Senator of the Year, the Chairman Senate Services Committee has enthroned much needed sanity, probity, transparency, accountability, due process and the rule of law in the contracts, tenders, prequalification and procurement regime of the Senate and the National Assembly as a whole thus placing the nation’s apex legislature on a sound, stable and coherent financial terra firma. Without doubt, Senator Ibrahim Gobir’s electoral aspirations are indeed shining brighter as the 201 general elections draws nearer.
SENATOR IDRIS UMAR: The amiable but firmly principled former Minister of Transport has indicated his interest in the Gombe governorship position and his political, administrative, legislative and technocratic credentials are indeed awe inspiring and multi-faceted thus placing him as a force to be reckoned with in the state’s political reckoning. Senator Idris Umar has considerable and credible grassroots support among the teeming masses in Gombe state and will definitely prove his mettle in the impending gubernatorial contest.
HON. ZAKARI MOHAMMED: The immensely popular and highly articulate, Chairman House of Committee on Basic Education is a vastly experienced and well accomplished political leader who has traversed the executive and legislative firmaments of the nation and is poised to engage the political fray one again with the active support of his people who have undoubtedly benefited from his benevolent and compassionate exertions on their behalf. Also he has succeeded in turning UBEC around with his unerring and consistent oversight activities which has raised the bar of efficiency transparency and professionalism as a whole.
HON. DATTI MOHAMMED: The Chairman House Ad Hoc committee on the State of the Nation’s Refineries has indeed hit the ground running in his onerous assignment having dramatically halted the NNPC’s turn around maintenance operations (TAM) of the refineries which the Committee felt was meant to preempt its mandate. Hon Datti Mohammed directed that all NNPC TAM activities must be suspended until the committee ascertains the true state and functionality of the refineries before TAM can proceed, a decision that has been applauded by industry stakeholders, public policy analysts and the general public alike. Also, Hon Datti has been unanimously endorsed for another term in the National Assembly by key party leaders, loyalists and stakeholders in his Sabon Gari federal constituency of Kaduna State.
HON. SULE GARO: The Deputy Chairman House Committee on Public Procurements is one astute and savvy political guru that does not suffer fools gladly for long even though he has bestowed benevolent and grassroots-oriented projects and interventions on behalf of his Gwarzo/Ikabo federal constituents. An ardent and indefatigable supporter and loyalist of the revolutionary Kwankwanssiya Movement, Hon Sule Garo and his legion of supporters have indicated that they are here to stay in the APC not minding whose ox is gored in the process. Undoubtedly he is set to derail the opposition when the time arises.
HON. SALISU KOKO: The political wunderkinder representing Kokobesse/Maiyama federal constituency of Kebbi State has undoubtedly being in the forefront of those advocating a better deal for their people and in this regard he has abided by his campaign promises of alleviating the plight of his constituents in the crucial health, education, roads, power, agriculture and manpower development arenas to the extent that they have indicated their irrevocable desire that he represent them for a second term in the House to round off his numerous accomplishments.
HON. ABDULRAHAMAN TERAB: The deft political tactician, always calm, suave and self-assured is set to tackle other contestants for the General Secretary position of the APC and he has the undoubted backing of some top party leaders and chieftains who believe that the former House of Reps member and incumbent Special Adviser to the House of Speaker on Finance has the wealth of experience, depth of knowledge, exposure and personal charisma to carry the day when the chips are down. Indeed Hon. Terab has indicated that in this pivotal G.S. Contest, there is definitely no retreat, no surrender.

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