Tinubu made mistake by merging ACN, CPC, others – Yakassai

January 12, 2022
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…says S’West group lost autonomy, bargaining chip

A prominent leader of the Northern Elders Forum (NEF), Alhaji Tanko Yakassai, yesterday, faulted the merger of three legacy political parties and factions of two others to form the All Progressives Congress (APC) in 2014.

Yakassai, a founding member of the Arewa Consultative Forum (ACF) and former Special Assistant to the President on National Assembly Matters during the Second Republic, described the historic merger as a mistake on the part of former Governor of Lagos State, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, and his political associates from the South West region.

The elder statesman expressed misgivings over the presidential aspiration of Tinubu and his recent visit to Aso Rock Presidential Villa to seek President Muhammadu Buhari’s support for his ambition ahead of the National Convention of the APC next month.

He recalled that Buhari contested the presidential election three times and failed until he got the support of Tinubu and others who played prominent roles in helping Buhari to become the President in 2015.

“In fact, I thought that    Tinubu should have, right from the beginning, entered into some kind of arrangement that he will get the support of Buhari when he needs it or something like that. But I’m surprised that it didn’t turn out to be the case.

Otherwise, Tinubu don’t have to make a special visit to Buhari to tell him that he is interested in the Presidency. “So, I think that Tinubu and his group, in my calcuquagmire  lation, made a mistake by agreeing to merge with Buhari’s party, the Congress for Progressive Change (CPC).

It would have been better for Tinubu and his friends to have retained their party, the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN), up to this time, even if they are going to merge.

“By merging, they surrendered their autonomy. It would have been better for them to have a party of their own instead of the merger of their party with Buhari’s party,” he said.

Yakassai said that inspite of the roles played by Tinubu in midwifing the Buhari Presidency, the political equation of Nigeria gives more advantage to candidates from the North than their counterparts from the South.

“In Nigeria, any merger of political parties between North and South, will give undue advantage to the North because it has a larger population.

So there is an advantage in terms of votes in party conventions and also during the elections. The South is naturally divided into two main groups; you have Igbo group and you have Yoruba group which are distinct from each other.

Then you have the Minority group which is also distinct from the Yoruba and Igbo groups. So if they did not dissolve their party, they would not have weakened their position.

“The North will require a very strong support from one of the three zones in the South.

So this is the reason why Tinubu and his people helped Buhari to become President, but they should have had a very concrete understanding even to the extent of putting it into writing.

It would not have been necessary for Tinubu to lobby Buhari for support in his quest for the Presidency. But that is the case now,” Yakassai said

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