Former Borno Governor, Senator Kashim Shettima, has said the National Leader of the All Progressives Congress, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, won’t agree to a consensus arrangement.
He said this is because Tinubu is “the elephant in the room” and the leading aspirant in the race for the APC’s presidential ticket.
Shettima, who spoke in an interview on Channels TV’s Politics Today, on Friday, argued that only Tinubu can defeat former Vice President Atiku Abubakar in the 2023 presidential race.
“If it is a game of numbers Tinubu will win. The issue of stepping down does not arise, he is the elephant in the room, how do you expect an elephant to step down for a Lilliputian? On a more serious note, the issue of (Tinubu) stepping down is mere speculation.
“More especially, even the speculation on anointment, the president’s special adviser came up to dispute it,” he said.
“Asiwaju is the only candidate with pedigree and brand name to stand shoulder to shoulder with Atiku. An attempt to test any other option might be catastrophic for APC.”
He also claimed the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), would prefer Tinubu as a successor.
Shettima said, “We are in a democratic situation but I’m afraid it might be catastrophic for the party. I’m not a prophet of doom; I’m an internal optimist. We have done our own bidding and by God’s grace, our candidate will emerge as the presidential flagbearer of the APC in the next 72 hours.
“It is not a subject of dispute but a question of time. He has paid the price, and yesterday in Abeokuta, he made some remarks that were deliberately distorted and quoted out of context.
“Whether they are willing to admit it or not, he played a pivotal role not only in the emergence of President Muhammadu Buhari as the candidate of the APC but in the ultimate election in 2015.
“He is the president of this country. His input is highly essential. We respect and adore him, but we believe at the end of the day, the president is a democrat and he will align himself with the aspirations of his party member.
“People are underrating the president a great deal and they are equally underrating the depth of his friendship with asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu. They have come a long way. The president is a man of honour who is being grossly underrated.
“The President Buhari I know, sufficiently, if at all the president is going to endorse anyone, that person is going to be asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu. Forget about all the charlatans and distractions and political contractors.”