All Progressives Congress (APC) chieftain, Orji Kalu, on Sunday warned that former Vice President Atiku Abubakar will take back power if his party fails to field a worthy opponent at the 2023 presidential election.
Mr Kalu, the chief whip of the Senate, gave this warning while congratulating Mr Abubakar after he emerged winner of the Peoples Democratic Party’s (PDP) presidential primary election.
He argued that the APC must now present a presidential candidate from Mr Abubakar’s North-East to counter the former vice president’s influence.
Peoples Gazette understands that Mr Kali has been a vociferous supporter of Senate President Ahmed Lawan who is also aspiring for the country’s top job. Mr Lawan, who has been at the national assembly for four consecutive terms, hails from northeastern state of Yobe.
Mr Kalu claimed that Mr Atiku’s emergence was a strong signal to the ruling party to field a candidate from the North-East geopolitical zone. He warned that the party will be headed for political oblivion if its leadership ignored his advice by choosing a southern presidential candidate.
“For our party the APC, it is no longer feasible to talk about Southern candidate except the APC want to go on political retirement,” Mr Kalu asserted. “I urge the National Chairman of the party and the entire National Working Committee, to stamp their feet and zone APC presidential ticket to the North-East.”
He therefore settled for a senatorial return for his native Abia North while touting support for his colleague at the senate.
“President Muhammad Buhari has a right to choose his successor,” Mr Kalu declared, “and I call on him to pick Senator Ahmad Lawan as his successor.”
The Senate chief-whip also called on all APC aspirants to drop their ambition to support Mr Lawan.