Modu-Sheriff steps down from APC presidential race

Senator Ali Modu-Sheriff, a former two-term governor of Borno and a front-line contender in the race for the All Progressives Congress (APC) presidential seat, has dropped out of the race.
The sheriff, who spoke at a press conference yesterday in Abuja, said he pulled out of the race out of respect for the party and President Muhammadu Buhari’s decision to zone the position to the centre-north .
He added that he had decided to step down from the race as a party man who respected the rule of law and party leaders.
“I’m sure most of you have been following the trends in the activities of our party, the APC, over the past 10 days or so.
“The party has taken a position that the post of its national president should go to the centre-north, which means that it is exclusively reserved for candidates from the zone.
“The president is the leader of the party and he has taken a stand. I have always told you that I will challenge if the position is zoned in my zone.
“That has always been my statement, and today they have taken a stand. I respect the president as a person and as a president he is my leader, therefore, I don’t want to oppose him from any way,” the sheriff said.
The former Borno governor added that the president and party leaders must have a reason for allowing his presidency to be zoned in the mid-north.
“I led a party – the People’s Democratic Party (PDP); I am a founding father of this party. I was the Chairman of the Board of Trustees (BoT) of the All Nigerian People Party (ANPP),” he said.
He added that he therefore knew the procedure and processes of a political party.
The sheriff, while saying he would respect the party’s decision to exclusively zone his position as president in the center-north, added that it was not, however, a final decision.
According to him, he can still challenge in case the party reverses its decision by Friday and opens the race to all.
He explained that normally zoning revolves around an individual, adding that it is however not done in a vacuum.
“And in congresses and party conventions, there is what is called a unity list, on the last day of the convention, when the leaders have made up their minds, they will come out with a list.
“And in this regard, the list will be followed by the participants because the parties are made up of men and women who also come from the zones and the states,” he explained.
The sheriff maintained that he would not run for an election, however, which had clearly been zoned out of the Northeast.
He thanked party members, stakeholders and Nigerians in general, who have been with him throughout his campaign across the country over the past two years.
According to him, his campaign resonated across the country and many people showed interest.
He further explained that he was withdrawing from the race because he wanted to uphold the rule of law, saying it was not right for anyone to do otherwise.
“I, Ali-Modu Sheriff, will not be applying for the APC national president competition scheduled for Saturday, March 26, because it has been zoned out of my zone.
“I’m from the northeast. The North Central where the post had been zoned is made up of Kogi, Kwara, Benue, Nasarawa and Plateau, these are the places where the next national chairman of the party will come from.
“Borno is in the northeast of Nigeria. I want you to communicate to all of our supporters, men and women across the country, so they don’t expect to see my name on the ballot.
“But if the party changes its mind between today and Friday and says anyone can challenge, within 12 hours you can fill out a form.
“But as long as the position is zoned north-central. I am not going to participate in this, ”he stressed.
The APC National Convention was scheduled for March 26 to elect new national cadres to manage party affairs.
The party is currently managed by an Interim and Extraordinary Convention Planning Committee (CECPC).
So far, seven candidates had bought the APC’s expression of interest and nomination forms for the price of N20 million to challenge his position as national president.
The aspirants are: Malam Saliu Mustapha, former National Vice President of the defunct Congress of Progressives (CPC), and George Akume, Minister of Special Affairs and Intergovernmental Affairs.
Others are; Senator Sani Musa, Tanko Al Makura and a former governor of Zamfara, Abudulaziz Yari, among other aspirants, who also purchased the forms.

Back To Top