by ‘Jola Sotubo
The bid to win more political stakeholders over to the All Progressives Congress (APC) continues today as leaders of the APC are set to meet with former President, Olusegun Obasanjo today.
According to reports, this trend of event has caused panic and anxiety at the Presidential Villa.
The move is coming after Chief Obasanjo’s 18-page letter to President Goodluck Jonathan and the continuous exodus of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) members into the APC.
Nigerian Eye reports:
Presidency officials, who said a formal response to Obasanjo’s tirade would come at the appropriate time, feared that the ex-president might use his meeting with the APC leaders to launch a fresh attack on President Jonathan.
It was gathered yesterday that Obasanjo might meet the APC leaders in Abeokuta. It is part of the ongoing consultations by the APC.
Others expected at the session are the five governors, who defected to the APC from the PDP.
They are Governors Murtala Nyako (Adamawa); Rotimi Amaechi (Rivers); Rabiu Kwankwaso (Kano); Aliyu Wammakko (Sokoto) and Abdulfatai Ahmed (Kwara).
A top source, who spoke in confidence, said: “Forces in the presidency are jittery that Obasanjo might further open up on the state of the nation. They are worried that such pronouncement from Obasanjo would finally be a setback for the PDP.
“If Obasanjo asks his followers to join the APC, it will certainly be disastrous for the PDP.
“The President and his strategists are uncomfortable with the visit which they think has the potency of undermining Jonathan’s aspiration for a second term in 2015.”
Jonathan’s strategists are said to have been meeting on how to manage the outcome of the APC leaders’ visit.
Another source, however, clarified the mission of the APC leaders.
He said: “Actually, the five governors were expected to meet Obasanjo before their defection to the APC. But they could not do so because of the exigency at the time.
“The APC leaders and governors are going to Abeokuta to rub minds with Obasanjo on why a change is necessary in the leadership of the nation.”
A governor, who responded to enquiries from our correspondent, said: “At least, we will expect Obasanjo to be neutral as the campaign for the presidency in 2015 begins early next year.”
A PDP source said: “We have got wind of the visit of the APC leaders and it would be a shock to the party, if Obasanjo has decided to host them. In what capacity will he be meeting with APC leaders?
“I think Obasanjo wants to confirm the suspicion that he has sympathy for the APC. Well, the electorate will decide.”
Meanwhile, the defection of some relations and political associates of some ministers has created a crack in Jonathan’s cabinet.
It was gathered that the presidency was pained that the husband of a serving minister has defected to the APC
Sources said some forces are pushing for the exit of such ministers, while others insisted that as long as those ministers are loyal to the government, they should be left alone.