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Nigerian VP to Launch Presidential Campaign Today


Nigeria’s opposition Action Congress party will today unveil its presidential campaign plans in preparation for this year’s general elections. The party said it will also commission its campaign headquarters and form a presidential campaign advisory committee to be led by presidential candidate Vice President Attiku Abubakar.

Shehu Garuba is the spokesman for Nigeria’s Vice President Attiku Abubakar. He said the commissioning of the campaign headhunters’ means the party is ready for elections.

“We are starting with the inauguration of the presidential headquarters. It is of course a landmark event because from here, there is obviously no looking back. But towards the end of the week we will have the major rally in the city of Kano where the presidential campaign will effectively kick off,” he said.

Garuba said there would also be an inauguration of a team of advisors to advise the presidential candidate of the Action Congress party.

“We are also inaugurating the presidential advisory council. This is a council of very serious politicians who would be advising the candidate on policy issues and on the matters of the campaign. There are also a number of events that have been lined up, several meetings consultations… thereafter we will proceed to Kano where the major rally will start,” Garuba noted.

He said President Olusegun Obasanjo over the weekend refused a request by Vice President Attiku Abubakar for use of the official presidential jet.

“That is exactly what happened. You know, we have been advised that there is a procedure now in place that if the vice president wish to make use of the presidential aircraft which of course have been bought in his own name as the vice president of Nigeria… that there should be an application to the president who will decide whether he will grant it or not,” he said.

But Garuba said the vice president wrote a letter requesting the use of the presidential jet, and he did not get an answer from the presidency.

“This is the first time since the return of the vice president from his vacation in the USA that he has applied to use his presidential plane. He was not even dignified with a response, and we believe that this is another dangerous development in the affairs of this country where there is an increasing personalization of the resources of this country by the president who now behaves as if both homes and the cars and the aircraft of the Nigerian federation belongs personally to him,” he said.

Garuba said the vice president has had to once again resort to charter a private plane to cater to his needs.

“The vice president of course made a private arrangement of chartering an aircraft which he used to Yola and returned after that. He also of course did not use the presidential terminal of the airport because that also is at the personal discretion of the president who now probably uses the airport terminal only by himself or people that he approves of,” he said.

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