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ACPN disowns Ezekwesili, pledges support for Buhari
JUST moments after withdrawing from the presidential race, former Minister of Education, Obiageli Ezekwesili, has been disowned by her party, the Allied Congress Party of Nigeria (ACPN), which have now pledged to support President Muhammadu Buhari’s re-election bid.
National Chairman of the ACPN, Gani Galadima, made this known on Thursday, at a press conference in Abuja few hours after Ezekwesili’s withdrawal.
Ezekwesili had tweeted she was withdrawing from the presidential run so as to devote her time to building “a coalition to defeat the All Progressives Congress and the People’s Democratic Party in the February 16 presidential election.”
Galadima expressed his disappointment with Ezekwesili, saying that the former minister of education only wanted to use the platform of the ACPN to negotiate to be finance minister.
“The reason for calling this press conference is to let the world know about the presidential aspiration of Dr. Oby Ezekwesili, which in actual fact, is not the truth,” Galadima said.
“I have been put into confidence by one of her aides named Iyinoluwa Aboyeji that she only wanted to use the platform of the ACPN to negotiate to be Nigeria’s finance minister.”
The party’s chairman said Ezekwesili did not inform the party before she backed out from the presidential journey. He said from the inception Ezekwesili did not show seriousness in her campaign.
“If you observe, Dr. Oby Ezekwesili is the only presidential candidate who was so militant in her campaign without any tangible thing on ground to indicate any seriousness in the prosecution of her campaign,” Galadima said.
He added that the madam had no campaign secretariat, billboard or great commitment on ground to indicate any seriousness.
“It is on this ground that the ACPN is withdrawing support for her presidential aspiration and endorsing the second term bid of President Muhammadu Buhari to take Nigeria to the next level,” Galadima submitted. He also said the decision to endorse President Buhari was to allow for continuity of his development programmes.
The party’s chairman urged Ezekwesili to return to the party all the donations “from all over the world” because the party would have to account to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and other properties belonging to the party.
“We may take her to court. She was just using us to play,” he said.
According to the chairman, the party’s fee for expression of interest and nomination form is N10.5 million but she only offered N100,000.