2015: I will run if APC chooses me –Buhari

Former military Head of State and a national leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Muhammadu Buhari, said on Tuesday that he has not ruled out his chances of running for the 2015 Presidential election, insisting that such a decision would be tied to the decision of the party.
“My decision will be tied to the constitution of the APC; if the party chooses me as its candidate, I will contest, if they do not consider me, I will not contest but I will still support the party.
“My decision to run for 2015 will solely be the party’s decision,” he said.
Buhari, who was Presidential candidate of the defunct Congress for Progressive Change (CPC) in  the last general election spoke while receiving members of the Democratic Emancipation Movement (DEM) who paid him a courtesy visit in his office in Kaduna.
Speaking on the journey leading to emergence of APC, Buhari said: “I thought about this merger since 2007. This is because I found out that none of the opposition parties can challenge PDP successfully.
“But if we come together with those that have representation at the National Assembly and the Houses of Assembly and go back to sensitise our constituents, even if the PDP wants to rig they would find it impossible to do so.
“I discovered that by being so divided, we made ourselves very vulnerable. So, the best way to survive and for this country to stabilise, we just have to come together and I believe along the line we made necessary sacrifices,” he added.
Speaking on the registration of the APC, Buhari attributed the feat to the impartial role played by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in the events leading to the eventual approval of the party.
Indeed, he praised the commission’s leadership to high heavens over the achievement.
He said the main focus of the APC at the moment would be to mobilise Nigerians towards pushing the ruling PDP out of power in 2015.
“To be honest, we have to thank INEC, because when we thought we have applied according to the 2010 Electoral Act, INEC drew our attention to the section that said there must be a headquarters at the federal capital that is good enough to be called the headquarters of a national party, then our constitution, our manifesto, the harmonisation of the main three parties.
“We thought that the initial nine signatories were enough to manage the party in the interim between registration and convention, but INEC advised us and told us that we need to get between at least 25 to 35 people to come out from the whole geo-political zones to sign.
“If the INEC wanted to be wicked, they could have kept mute and just send us a letter that our application was not complete, they could have done that.
“But for them to send us an observation which was later corrected, I believe they have been very impartial and we thank them for that,” Buhari said.
According to him, “The tension had already come and gone; people now think that they have viable alternative. These feelings and belief are aboard across the country, not only in the North or in the South West.
“There is a good feeling about the party in all the political zones of the country.
“Our next important step is the mobilisation of constituencies to make sure that elections are conducted according to law.
“In 2003, 2007, 2011, a lot of disgraceful things happened during those election years. We are trying now to put the structure of APC on the ground from the ward level to the national, with the hope of giving Nigerians hope and capturing power.
“Those that are going to be in charge of the party from now to the convention are the people that are very committed to the party’s stabilisation and political strength of the country.
“We have started working hard to ensure that we avoid problems.”
Buhari attributed the registration of APC and others to efforts of late Gani Fawehinmi, saying “it was late Gani Fawehinmi who took the letter I wrote and went to Supreme Court to stop the ruling party from denying other parties registration.
“We all thank Gani Fawehinmi for his foresight to challenge the matter at the Supreme Court,” he said.
Buhari said APC was determined to give Nigerians a new lease life and hope.
Speaking earlier, leader of the Democratic Emancipation Movement, Matamaki Tom Maiyashi, said Nigerians are aware of several efforts aimed at sabotaging the registration of APC.
Meanwhile, APC  said on Tuesday that it was not bothered about the identity of its Presidential flag-bearer in 2015, adding that the office of the Presidency was not its priority for now.

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