Emerging report revealed that a quiet protest by Africa’s richest man, Alhaji Aliko Dangote, against his inclusion on the President Muhammadu Buhari’s 2019 Presidential Campaign Council, was what pushed the Presidency to quickly remove his name.
Recall, that the APC, on Friday, made public the names of members of its Presidential Campaign Council for the 2019 elections, through a Press statement by the Special Adviser to the President on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina.
On the Special Advisory Committee To the President, which the Vice President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo chairs, Dangote was initially listed as a member, alongside Bola Tinubu, Senate Leader, Senator Ahmed Lawan; Leader of the House Femi Gbajabiamila; APC National Chairman, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole; and Femi Otedola.
However, the Presidency, in a two-paragraph statement endorsed by Adesina, titled: “Dangote Not Member of APC Campaign Council”, said: “It has become imperative to further clarify the status of Alhaji Aliko Dangote, named under the sub-head advisory members in the All Progressives Congress (APC) Presidential Campaign Council, announced on Friday, December 28, 2018.
“Africa’s richest man, not being a card-carrying member of APC, cannot, and is not member of the PCC. He is also a member of the Peace Committee, and thus cannot be in a partisan Campaign Council.”
Some Leaders of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, who spoke off record on Dangote’s inclusion in the Campaign Council, are of the view that the APC merely attempted to play politics with the Billionaire’s name.
A PDP source said: “There is no other reason the APC has for including the name of Dangote in its Campaign Committee, other than seeking to gain undeserved popularity. But in doing so, the APC and the Presidency have been so wicked and mischievous.
“We are aware that the Businessman has protested against his inclusion, but will not want to make a Media issue out of it.”
Another source hinted that Dangote’s quiet protest was what prompted the reversal by President Buhari, late Friday.
“Also, information at our disposal, is that Dangote threatened to open up against the Presidency and the APC, if they failed to publicly remove his name and offer a public apology to him.
“This is the kind of thing that happens when a ruling party loses credibility and acceptance. In their desperation, they have begun to do all kinds of things to be relevant, even though all efforts continue to fail, because the party is built around fraud”, he added.
Shortly after the announcement that Dangote was one of the members of the APC Presidential Campaign Council, President Buhari issued a statement clarifying that the Business Mogul was no longer a member.