Posted by Africast.com on
Despite his indictment by a government panel on graft allegations, Nigeria's Vice President Atiku Abubakar insists he will contest for the presidency in 2007.
ABUJA, November 13 -- Despite his indictment by a government panel on graft allegations, Nigeria's Vice President Atiku Abubakar insists he will contest for the presidency in 2007.
"I have the constitutional right to contest for the position of the president and when the time comes, I will inform everyone of my desire to do so," Abubakar told a delegation of political stakeholders from northern Gombe State, who visited him at his residence in Abuja at the weekend.
Abubakar, who claims to be a "victim of vendetta" by President Olusegun Obasanjo has challenged his indictment in court.
Both men have been embroiled in a political war of wits and trading corruption allegations.
Abubakar's assurance to his supporters came as President Obasanjo denied reports that he had anointed a successor.
Ahead of the 2007 general elections, the list of those seeking to succeed Obasanjo has grown with former military dictator, Ibrahim Babangida, finally picking the nomination form of the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) last week after months of speculation on his ambition.
At least seven serving State governors, and another former military leader are among those that have indicated willingness to run for the top job.
In a statement in Abuja at the weekend, a presidential spokesman Uba Sanni, denied reports that Obasanjo had endorsed a governor or anyone at all for the post.
"All eligible Nigerians, especially those in the PDP, should step out and aspire to the office of the President," Sanni said in a statement. "The President is committed to creating a level-playing field so that the best candidate can emerge." - PANA
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