Given the age and disposition of former Head of State, Major-General Muhammadu Buhari, towards the 2015 presidential election, a few of his associates, some northern leaders and young turks in the North have begun searching for a credible alternative to vie for the ticket of the opposition coalition All Progressives Congress in the election.
This group of northern leaders and elite have, therefore, as a first step, penciled down those they want to persuade to take up the gauntlet and run against President Goodluck Jonathan in the election.
Sources on Sunday can reveal today that top on the list of such northerners the group has zeroed in on are Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Governor Sanusi Lamido Sanusi and Kano State Governor Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso.
Sanusi, a blue blood from Kano, is being considered, the newspaper learnt, because of his credentials and experience.
As CBN governor, he introduced far-reaching reforms, which helped to sanitise the banking sector in the country.
His first term expires in June next year and Sanusi had indicated that his task has been accomplished and will not seek re-appointment.
Kwankwaso is one of the Group of 7 Peoples Democratic Party governors who broke away from the party to form a splinter group called New PDP. The court has, however, stopped the factional group.
The Kano State governor, sources learnt, won the admiration of the group because he had demonstrated political sagacity and ability to deliver to the people of the state.
“Kwankwaso is not a core-PDP man and he is not pro-Jonathan,” one Northern leader aware of the new political calculation said last night.
When contacted, Sanusi confirmed that some leaders had spoken to him in the past (in 2011) and at present to run for the presidency, but that he had given them the same answer that he was not a politician.
“I have no preparation and experience in politics. What I have education, competence and professional experience in is what I am involved in at present,”.
He described himself as a banker and risk manager, stating that when he was made CBN governor in 2009, he used that experience to sanitise the banking system. He pleaded that he should not be dragged into politics.
The Kano State governor could not be reached last night to react to the new development but one of his aides who spoke with sources said he would not rule that out, but added that whether Kwankwaso would run on APC or PDP platform is premature at present.
“The governor will do what the people of the North and Kano State want,” he said.
The aide who pleaded for anonymity, however, expressed surprise as to why PDP would be accusing Kwankwaso of not sufficiently supporting President Jonathan in the 2011 election.
“Kano has reputation as a bastion of progressives politics, of the NEPU genre. But Kano gave President Jonathan 16 percent in the 2011 poll, higher than what former presidents Shehu Shagari and Olusegun Obasanjo got during their time. President Jonathan even got more votes in Kano than former governor of the state, Mallam Ibrahim Shekarau,” he said.
He said Kwankwaso lost in 2003 essentially because the people of the state thought he was supporting former President Obasanjo.
Posted by SirVic for wetopup(News Laboratry)