The Presidency, on Tuesday, has said that the political decisions of the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), are not in any way influenced by a so-called “cabal” and backroom boys.
In a statement signed by the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu, the presidency faulted the local media for peddling “made up stories–speculating about the role of the President in the flagbearer contest.”
The statement is titled ‘President’s laudatory role in the APC primary’.
It said, “Those still assailing the APC and the President expounding conspiracy theories and making all manner of speculations about who did what or did not need to understand the important point about the country’s leader: President Buhari takes his own decisions and carries them out without the backup of a so-called ‘cabal’ or backroom boys.”
Its response is coming on the backdrop of the just-concluded presidential primary elections which saw the emergence of Bola Tinubu as flagbearer.
The Presidency said, “There’s no greater intrigue for this kind of speculation-journalism than a party flag bearer primary. But it only comes around once every four years–or every eight following President Buhari’s second term. Therefore, the media must make the most of it.
“So, what a disappointment the All Progressives Congress party flag bearer primary must have been for those who assembled to witness a catastrophe? No intrigue, no division, no disagreement, no defeated candidates rejecting the result, no splits, no third-party runs. Only determination to rally around the chosen flagbearer to deliver victory and an APC third term in February 2023.”
The presidency maintained that despite speculations that the president would impose a candidate upon the party, Buhari’s decision to allow for an open contest at the primaries indicates that he is far from being an autocratic leader.
It further accused the general opposition of “a conspiracy to destabilise the governing party and defame the President.”
“The media are being inundated with made up stories–speculating about the role of the President in the flagbearer contest: whether he had a favoured candidate, and whether manoeuvres were made to install them; whether the chosen flagbearer was the President’s choice, or another. And on and on.
“Speculation is easy. But facts are simple. The President always said he had a favoured candidate. He said that candidate was whoever was chosen by the APC in a democratic primary to lead the party at the election,” the statement read.