Leaders of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the south-west have cautioned presidential hopefuls from the region against name-calling, saying all aspirants have a right to contest.
The APC leaders spoke on Friday at meeting involving presidential hopefuls.
The meeting was part of efforts to boost the region’s chances of securing the APC presidential ticket
According to sources at the meeting, the APC leaders also advised presidential hopefuls to caution their supporters against personal attacks.
“The issue of betrayal was put to rest as the elders affirmed that everyone who desires to run for any political office whatsoever is not encumbered in any way at all,” a source at the meeting said.
The presidential hopefuls were said to have agreed to conduct rancour-free campaigns.
Present at the meeting included Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo, Bola Tinubu, former Lagos governor; Bisi Akande, former interim chairman of the APC; and Segun Osoba, former governor of Ogun; and Kayode Fayemi, Ekiti governor.
Babatunde Fashola, minister of works and housing; Femi Gbajabiamila, speaker of the house of representatives; as well as APC governors from the south-west — Rotimi Akeredolu of Ondo, Dapo Abiodun of Ogun, Babajide Sanwo-Olu of Lagos, and Gboyega Oyetola of Osun.
Rauf Aregbesola, minister of interior, and Iyiola Omisore, APC national secretary, were also at the meeting.
The south-west stakeholders also advised aspirants to ensure they remain united ahead of the APC presidential primary.
Leaders in sub-region have shown commitment to good governance, democratic enterprises, says Osinbajo
VP adds: There is clear evidence international community will no longer accept unconstitutional takeover of government.
With its latest stand against unconstitutional seizure of power, leaders of member states in the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) have shown strong resolve and commitment to issues of good governance and democracy in the sub-region, according to Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, SAN.
Prof. Osinbajo stated this on Sunday in Accra, Ghana, where he represented President Muhammadu Buhari at an Extraordinary Summit of the ECOWAS Authority of Heads of State and Government to discuss the political situation in the Republic of Mali.
At the Summit on Sunday, ECOWAS agreed to impose additional sanctions on the military junta in Mali, withdraw all ECOWAS Ambassadors in the country, and also close land and air borders between ECOWAS Member States and Mali. The Vice President disclosed that there is a strong resolve by ECOWAS Member States to stand against coup d’états in the sub-region.
Speaking to journalists after the Summit, Prof. Osinbajo said: “what is being done is unprecedented. In the years gone by, the African Union, then known as OAU and ECOWAS, never came down heavily on Coups de’tats; but there is evidence now that there is a very strong resolve that ECOWAS and, indeed, AU and the international community will not accept unconstitutional take over of government.”
Continuing, Prof. Osinbajo said, “it’s very evident that there is very strong resolve, which is why we are here today. We expect that the actions that will be taken will point the junta in Mali in the right direction.” “I think ECOWAS has shown that it has not lost its bite where there are concerns about issues of good governance and democratic enterprises in the sub-region, which is why sanctions against Guinea and Mali were imposed.” After reviewing the situation in Mali at the Extraordinary Summit, the sub-regional leaders rejected the transition schedule proposed by the Malian military junta, noting that “the proposed chronogram for a transition is totally unacceptable”.
The body also imposed additional sanctions on the junta, including the following:
a) Withdrawal of all ECOWAS Ambassadors in Mali;
b) Closure of land and air borders between ECOWAS countries and Mali;
c) Suspension of all commercial and financial transactions between ECOWAS Member States and Mali, with the exception of the following products: essential consumer goods; pharmaceutical products; medical supplies and equipment, including materials for the control of COVID-19 products, and electricity
d) Freeze of assets of the Republic of Mali in ECOWAS Central Banks;
e) Freeze of assets of the Malian State and the State Enterprises and Parastatals in Commercial Banks
f) Suspension of Mali from all financial assistance and transactions from financial institutions. The communique also disclosed that the Authority of ECOWAS Heads of State and Government “instructs all Community institutions to take steps to implement these sanctions with immediate effect.”
Noting that the sanctions will only be gradually lifted “after an acceptable and agreed transition chronogram is finalized and monitored-satisfactory progress is realised in the implementation of the chronogram for the elections.” Regarding Guinea, ECOWAS noted that it remained concerned about the slow progress of the transition process four months after the coup.
According to the Communique issued at the end of the meeting, “The Authority regrets the absence of chronogram for the election and the non-setting up of the National Council of Transition (CNT). It also directs that a mission be fielded to Conakry to discuss the transition.”
Earlier in his remarks at the opening session of the Summit, Chairman of ECOWAS, President Nana Akufo-Addo of Ghana, praised the commitment and support of West African leaders to the progress and prosperity of the sub-region. Recalling the efforts of the leaders in resolving the crisis in parts of the sub-region, President Akufo-Addo said, “as you did through the entire year of 2021, you continue to demonstrate your commitment to responding to urgent and critical evolving situations in the region. “This is the 6th Extraordinary Summit since I assumed the chair of the Authority that Your Excellencies have participated in concerning the vexed issues of Mali and Guinea.
It is a strong testimony to your leadership and concern to the progress of ECOWAS.” Aside from Vice President Osinbajo and the Ghanaian President – who presided at the Summit, other West African leaders present at the Summit were Presidents Macky Sall of Senegal; George Weah of Liberia; Patrice Talon of Benin Republic; Roch Marc Christian Kaboré of Burkina Faso, and Alassane Ouattara of Cote d’Ivoire. Other Heads of State present include Umaro Embalò of the Republic of Guinea Bissau; Mohamed Bazoum of Niger Republic; Julius Maada Bio of Sierra Leone, and the Vice President of The Gambia, Isatou Touray.
The session was also attended by former Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan, who is the ECOWAS Mediator for Mali; the President of the ECOWAS Commission, Mr Jean-Claude Kassi Brou; among other representatives of international organisations.
Laolu AkandeSenior Special Assistant to the President on Media & PublicityOffice of the Vice PresidentJanuary 10th, 2022