The leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Bola Tinubu, has said merit will not be compromised while choosing the Senate President.
Mr. Tinubu said this in Abuja on Thursday after holding a closed-door meeting with the President-elect, Muhammadu Buhari.
He said he would not go against anything the party decided but assured that merit would not be compromised while making the decision.
“Well, you have heard from the party; you have heard from leadership. My desire is not to rock the party. I am a disciplined party man and we will look at it critically,” he said.
“However, the nation is expecting us to take a decisive leadership decision. Merit would not be compromised. You have to be competent; you have to possess the character for the leadership.
“You have to be PAN Nigerian and be a very solid character to lead the National Assembly and that is what we are talking about,’’ he said.
Mr. Tinubu said the party had decided, in a meeting, that zoning would not be considered in choosing the leader because it could “compromise the credibility, qualification of an individual”.
“Let everybody aspire just like we aspired,” he said.
The APC leadership has already arranged a two-day retreat for all Senators elect in Abuja, which starts tomorrow, Friday.
It is expected that the party at the retreat would finally put the issue of the leadership of the Senate to rest.
Senators Ahmed Lawan, George Akume and Bukola Saraki are the leading candidates to emerge as the next Senate President.
APC able to clean Nigeria
Mr. Tinubu also said that the incoming APC administration under Muhammadu Buhari has the capacity to respond to the myriad of challenges facing the country when it takes over power on May 29.
Mr. Tinubu said the APC will “aggressively” take on the challenges facing the country, despite the gloomy state of affairs.
Vice President-elect, Yemi Osinbajo, was on Wednesday quoted as saying that the outgoing government of President Goodluck Jonathan is leaving behind the worst economy ever in the history of Nigeria.
Mr. Osinbajo, who spoke while declaring open a two-day Policy Dialogue on the implementation of the Agenda for Change organised by the Policy, Research and Strategy Directorate of the APC Presidential Campaign Council, also said Nigeria’s local and foreign debts profile presently stand at $60 billion.
Speaking Thursday, Mr. Tinubu said although the economic situation is bad, the APC campaigned on issues and has already carried out extensive research to be in the full know of what to do.
“The party campaigned on issues and we are going to tackle issues very aggressively. One thing that must be clear is that change has occurred, what is left now is the positive change based upon the expectation of Nigerians that will follow,” he said.
He called on Nigerians to wait until the APC takes over power and see how it would go about tackling the challenges. He expressed the confidence that the party has what it takes to move the country forward.
He also said Nigerians would be carried along in the quest to providing quality leadership.
“It is clear, nobody has given you an indication of shying away from it. There would be a very serious dialogue, there would be a serious exposition and debate, a robust one for that matter for the Nigerian public to be involved in what this government is up for the future of this country.”