The All Progressives Congress (APC) has thrown its weight behind President Muhammadu Buhari for his controversial World Bank request which asked the bank to focus on the Nothern region of the country.
At the end of the party’s National Working Committee’s closed-door meeting on Wednesday, Oct. 18, the party’s National Publicity Secretary, Bolaji Abdullahi told newsmen that Buhari did no wrong in asking the World Bank to concentrate on developments in the North-East.
Abdullahi stressed that contrary to perceptions, Buhari did not make the request to the bank out of any bias, adding that the issue was extensively discussed at the meeting.
“When the President was asking the World Bank to focus attention on the development of the North-East, he had in mind the necessary reconstruction that needs to happen in that part of the country,” he said.
Noting that the situation was worse in the Borno, Adamawa and Yobe, Abdullahi added that the president’s request was not intended to divide the country or show a preference for one region of the country against the other.
The APC spokesman said the party believed that as long as the North-East continues to suffer devastation and represents a dark spot in the country`s human developmental indices, there is a need to direct special attention to the region
Also speaking after the party’s NWC meeting, Governor Mohammed Abubakar of Bauchi State addressed the raging debate over an automatic return ticket to President Muhammadu Buhari, ahead of the 2019 general elections.
While addressing newsmen, Abubakar, who was flanked by the Senate Leader, Ahmed Lawan, and the party’s spokesman, Bolaji Abdullahi, stated that the party would abide by its rules in the choice of its next presidential candidate.
Asked whether the ticket was open to anyone or restricted to the President only, Abubakar said the issue of endorsing the President or otherwise did not come up for discussion.
He said the meeting did not also discuss the reported stance of some South-West leaders of the party to the effect that the ticket was open to anyone.
“This meeting has not deliberated on that but the APC has a constitution and that is one of the items that was discussed; the amendment of the constitution of the APC in order to faithfully hold the constitution of the APC in line with democratic principles, and we will abide by the provisions of our constitution,” he stated.
Gov. Abubakar also denied reports that the President indicted the governors over their inability to pay salaries, despite receiving a budget support fund as well as a part refund of the Paris Club debt payment.
“He did not direct any accusation at the governor’s because the governors have actually utilised the Federal Government’s intervention for the payment of salaries. We are not begging for support but asking that what is due to us should be paid to us,” he said.