Rochas Okorocha, Tunde Bakare and Ben Ayade among seven (7) others are not on the screening committee ‘safe list’.
ABUJAPRESS has earlier reported that the All Progressives Congress (APC) screening panel disqualified ten (10) out of the twenty-three (23) presidential hopefuls from participating in its special convention to pick a standard-bearer for the ruling party ahead of the 2023 election.
This online news platform understands the chairman of the screening panel, John Oyegun, made this known on Friday, June 3, 2022, while presenting a report to Abdullahi Adamu, APC national chairman.
“First, we have 23 aspirants that we interacted with and my first comment is that we are indeed a lucky party. The point I want to make is the quality of the people that want to govern this country,” Oyegun said.
“We are a governing party and so the ability to lead, the background, experience… it is on the basis that we made a shortlist. I won’t want to read the names, I’d leave that to you, but we brought the number down to 13.
“We could have cut it a little shorter but we wanted the younger elements to surface.”
ABUJAPRESS reports that Presidential sources reveal that contrary to widespread reports that 10 aspirants were ‘disqualified’, all aspirants were cleared and qualified but the committee recommended a ‘safe list’ of 13 names.
The names of the aspirants on the safe-list include;
Bola Ahmed Tinubu
Senator Godswill Akpabio
Tein Jack Rich
Those not included in the list are;
Uju Ken Ohanenye
Furthermore, it was gathered that the only aspirant that rejected the option of supporting a Consensus Candidate for the party should it arise was Bola Tinubu. The Lagos politician said he would only accept consensus if he was the beneficiary.
Speaking on the criteria for shortlisting the 13 candidates, Oyegun disclosed that the list would have been shorter but the committee decided to allow the party choose their preferred candidate.
He said; “First, we had 23 member aspirants that we interacted with. And my first comment is that we were very occupant. Those were 23 that presented themselves. We had a lot of others, prominent Nigerians both within and outside the country that had applied but for whatever reason, could not proceed with their applications.”
The second point I want to make is that we were surprised at the active participation of the youthful members of the party. Some of them surprised us with what they have accomplished in life, their understanding of the situation in this country and why they want to have the privilege of governing this country.”
“Aside from the basic background, experience and understanding of the Nigerian situation, the ideas as to how issues, difficulties and problems can be addressed were key factors that were considered.”
The APC is scheduled to hold its Presidential Primaries on Monday, 6th of May.