Kwankwaso ponders leaving APC as party hierarchy hounds him over his presidential ambition

FORMER Kano State governor Senator Rabiu Kwankwaso is said to be considering leaving the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) following the party's moves to frustrate his 2019 presidential ambition.


Over the last few weeks, Senator Kwankwaso has faced bitter opposition from the APC following his decision to seek the party's presidential ticket in next year's elections. In his native Kano State, Senator Kwankwaso is now out of favour as Governor Abdullahi Ganduje has led the opposition to his move to stand against President Muhammadu Buhari.


Over the last week, however, there have been moves to resolve the crisis with party leader Asiwaju Bola Tinubu heading a reconciliation committee. However, Senator Kwankwaso, who has criticised the government over incessant ethnic killings and economic meltdown, has  alleged that the presidency had displayed partiality in the crisis rocking the Kano APC chapter and he no longer feels the party needs him.


Senator Kwankwaso said: “Let me give you two instances, the APC went to invite a former Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) senator Basheer Lad, who joined the party last month. Lado, represented Kano Central from 2011 to 2015 but Kwankwaso defeated him during the last election.


“What they have done now is to offer him automatic ticket to return to the Senate in 2019. We have eyes and ears everywhere and already have the details of the deal they agreed before Lado left PDP."


Last week, Senator Kwankwaso formally declared his bid for the presidency and he now fears that this will continue to be used against him. APC leaders are unlikely to allow any other party member to stand against President Buhari when its primaries hold later this year.


“What this development means is that even if Kwankwaso decides go back to the National Assembly, the presidency, the APC and Kano government won’t allow him because they now have a candidate. Another instance is the rally they forced Kwankwaso to shelve but when Lado declared for APC, they shut down the Sani Abacha stadium in Kano on January 27 and the police and others didn’t asking him to postpone his rally.


“Lado was received by deputy national chairman, Segun Oni and President Buhari sent a letter and said he would have attended but that the date coincides with African Union event he travelled for. However, when a former governor and sitting senator wanted to meet his people in his home state, they said there will be violence," Senator Kwankwaso added.


He pointed out that the  writing is clear and all his friends and followers have been telling him for a long time to leave APC. One of Senator Kwankwaso's aides said his principal remains in the ruling party but they are waiting for outcome of the Tinubu peace committee set up by President Buhari.