Three months after going head to head in the primary for an All Progressives Congress presidential ticket, which eventually saw Asiwaju Bola Tinubu as its flag bearer, Vice President Yemi Osinbajo; Former Transport Minister Rotimi Amaechi and 20 other aspirants will meet again on August 31 in Abuja.
The development comes on the heels of Tinubu’s reported flirtation with Rivers governor Nyesom Wike, which made headlines again when the two met in London two days ago.
The alleged pact between the two is coming to light after weeks of speculation and shrouded moves.
Wike had attended the meeting with his allies including Oyo State Governor Seyi Makinde; Benue State Governor Samuel Ortom; Abia State Governor Okezie Ikpeazu and former Cross River State Governor Donald Duke, among others.
Tinubu, who has been heavily criticized for his preference for a Muslim-Muslim ticket, is trying to boost his chances in the February 28 presidential poll by luring Wike to his camp.
His choice of Shettima aroused mixed feelings in the APC camp, with several former aspirants and party leaders feeling left out of his campaign plan.
A statement released Thursday by the media team of APC’s youngest aspirant, Dr. Nicolas Felix, revealed that virtually all aspirants who attended the latest presidential convention would gather in Abuja next week.
The statement read in part: “The special invitation to the strategic meeting of all 2023 APC presidential aspirants, to be held at Transcorp Hilton in Abuja, on Wednesday, August 31, 2022 at 2:00 p.m., is to brainstorm about adopting winning campaign strategies that engage every Nigerian and tackle the challenges that plague our country.”
Among those expected to attend are Vice President Yemi Osinbajo; former Minister of Transport, Rotimi Amaechi; former Minister of Science and Technology, Ogbonnaya Onu; former State Education Minister Chukwuemeka Nwajiuba and former Niger Delta Affairs Minister Godswill Akpabio.
There would also be five serving governors, namely Yahaya Bello (Kogi), Dave Umahi (Ebonyi), Abubakar Badaru (Jigawa), Ben Ayade (Cross River), and Kayode Fayemi (Ekiti).
Others include Senate President Ahmad Lawan; former Governor of Ogun State and serving Senator, Ibikunle Amosun; a serving Senator, Ajayi Boroffice; former governor of Zamfara, Ahmad Sani; former Governor of Imo State and serving Senator, Rochas Okorocha; a former Senate President, Ken Nnamani; a former Speaker of the House of Representatives, Dimeji Bankole; fiery cleric, Tunde Bakare; Pastor and businessman, Dr. Nicholas Felix; former Minister of Information, Ikeobasi Mokelu; Businessman, Tein Jack-Rich and the only woman among them, Uju Ken-Ohanenye.
The aspirants’ last outing together was the APC Presidential primary, held in Eagle Square from June 7-10.