After losing APC primary, Lawan faces senatorial loss as placeholder refuses to step down - POP News

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Tuesday, June 14, 2022

After losing APC primary, Lawan faces senatorial loss as placeholder refuses to step down

After losing APC primary, Lawan faces senatorial loss as placeholder refuses to step down


After his botched attempt to be elected the presidential candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), senate president, Ahmad Lawan’s bid to secure the party’s senatorial ticket for the Yobe North constituency has run into troubled waters.

It was rumoured that Mr Lawan, like the governor of Ebonyi, David Umahi, who also contested in the APC presidential primary, had nominated a placeholder to secure the APC ticket for the Yobe North Senatorial seat.

However, unlike Mr Umahi, who didn’t have a problem replacing his younger brother, Austin, whom he had elected as his placeholder for the APC Ebonyi South Senatorial ticket, Mr Lawan is having problems getting Bashir Machina, his rumoured placeholder, to relinquish the ticket for him.

Last Friday, supporters of Mr Machina organised a solidarity rally where they insisted the politician will not step down for the senate president, who has repeatedly represented the constituency for 23 years; first as the member of the House of Representatives for Bade/Jakusko Federal Constituency between 1999- 2007, and the senator for the Yobe North district from 2007 to date.

Lawan’s plot to return
It was gathered that the senate president was seeking the assistance of the national chairman of the APC, Abdullahi Adamu, in his quest to claim the senatorial ticket from Mr Bashir.

The move is, however, meeting stiff resistance and Mr Machina and his supporters have vowed not to step down for the senate president.

Supporters of Mr Machina gathered in Gashua, the hometown of the senate president to reject the rumoured plan to replace their principal.

Mr Machina’s supporters, led by a former commissioner for youth in the state, Salleh Kachalla, also visited the palace of the Emir of Bade, Abubakar Suleiman II.

At the palace, they told the emir that the people of Bade and Jakusko local governments are in support of Mr Machina’s candidacy.

“We the people of Bade and Jakusko have decided to throw our weight behind the candidature of Bashir Machina who was duly elected as the APC candidate for our zone to take over from the senate president Ahmad Lawan, Mr Kachalla said.

“We are in your Palace today specifically to seek your blessings and formally inform you of our resolve to support the candidature of Bashir Machina who is from old Nguru Emirate,” he added.

The Emir of Bade, Abubakar Umar Suleiman, thanked the groups for visiting him and wished Mr Machina well in his political journey.

Some of the stakeholders with the Emir of Bade at his palace
Another speaker of the group Nura Dalhatu Gashua said having spent 23 years at the National Assembly, Mr Lawan’s time as the representative of the people was up and he should not plot a comeback through the backdoor.

Former Secretary of the defunct All Nigeria Peoples Party (ANPP) Mohmmed Gaskanta, who attended the rally, said Mr Machina was duly elected as the party’s candidate and should not be stepping down for anyone.

“We cannot accept anything less. As far as we are concerned, we have our candidate Bashir Machina and no one can change it. If they like, they can change it at the villa but we are the people casting our votes here. The people in the villa cannot decide who is our senator in the zone,” Mr Gaskanta said.

Mr Lawan could not be immediately reached for comments.

When reached for comments, Mohammed Isa, the spokesperson of Mr Machina, said his principal was not planning to step down for the senate president.

“The position of Mr Bashir Machina is that, in the first place, he did not have any agreement with anybody to step down, let alone concede the senatorial seat to anyone.

“Secondly, the mandate he got is for the people and not by or for an individual therefore, he has no right to take any decision about what the delegates did in electing him by surrounding his senatorial seat for anybody.

“My principal is still in the race and Isha Allah will be elected as a senator to represent his people come 2023,”

“It is totally untrue, he emerged as the Party’s candidate and will stand as APC’s flag-bearer in the upcoming general elections,” Mr Isa said.


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