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2011: Buhari Woos Gov. Saraki of Kwara

The presidential aspirant of the Congress for Progressive Change (CPC), Major-Gen. Muhammadu Buhari (rtd), yesterday held a closed-door meeting with the Second Republic Senate Leader and strongman of Kwara politics, Dr. Olusola Saraki, in Ilorin, Kwara State.
The meeting, which was held at the Ilofa country-home of the statesman in Ilorin, was well attended by some political associates of the former Senate leader.
Details of the meeting were sketchy last night but THISDAY checks revealed that it might not be unconnected with Buhari’s presidential ambition and the need to reach out to key political leaders for support.
The meeting was also said to have dwelt on the current political situation in the state ahead of the 2011 election.
It was learnt that the rising number of the governorship aspirants in the state was said to be giving Saraki concern, thereby necessitating the need to prepare a plan “B” to ensure his daughter, Senator Rukayyah Gbemisola Saraki,  gets a governorship ticket to contest the poll.
Gbemisola, who is a governorship aspirant in the state, and some of her political associates were in attendance at the meeting.
Buhari could not speak to newsmen as he was effectively shielded from journalists, but the former Senate leader denied that the meeting was to prepare grounds for his defection to CPC.
“I don’t intend to go anywhere but we just discussed about the network of CPC across the country,” he said.
He said they discussed  CPC’s strength state by state, individual by individual, but that they did not discuss CPC in Kwara State.
Saraki, however, admitted that there was problem in PDP in the state, stating, “I am one of their supporters and not a member of PDP because I don’t like the way and manner the PDP is being run in Kwara State today.”
He said: “I told you yesterday (Monday) when I arrived Ilorin from Lagos that I would tell you where to go but for now I am yet to tell you where to go because as your leader, we are going to discuss and if you accept my advice and you follow me then, it is then we are going to take final decision since we are men of honour in Kwara State.”
Among those who also attended the meeting were some serving council chairmen, former council chairmen, former commissioners, special advisers and top politicians in the state.
There have been reports that Saraki and his son, the state Governor Bukola Saraki, are divided over Gbemisola’s aspiration as the governor is said to be opposed to her sister mounting the saddle immediately after him.
Some commissioners in the state namely: Commissioner for Economic Development, Alhaji Fatai Ahmed; Commissioner for Finance, Alhaji Abdulrasaq Atunwa; and former Minister of Sports, Hon. Issa Bio, are said to have collected Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) governorship nomination forms allegedly at the prompting of the governor.
Others that have collected forms in PDP are Senator Ahmed Muhammed, representing Kwara North in the Senate; and former Vice-Chancellor of the University of Ilorin, Prof. Shuaib Oba Abdulraheem.
And sensing the game may be up by the powers-that-be in the state, Gbemisola, in the last few weeks now, is said to be working on defecting to CPC in case it’s proving difficult for her to pick the PDP governorship ticket.

 

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Posted by on Dec 28 2010. Filed under Kwara, Latest Politics, Party Politics. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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