The governor of Kano State, Rabi’u Kwankwaso, will on Thursday formally declare his bid to contest the 2015 presidential election on the platform of the All Progressives Congress, APC, his campaign handler, Olisaemeka Akumaki, has said.
Mr. Akumaki told journalists in Abuja that the governor had concluded consultations among his associates across the country and that they had given him the nod to enter the presidential race.
By the decision, Mr. Kwankwaso would be joining other members of the opposition party who plan to run for president.
The others include former Vice President, Atiku Abubakar, who has since September 24 made his intention known; former Head of State, Muhammadu Buhari, and publisher of Leadership Newspapers, who will openly declare on October 15 and 28, respectively.
Mr. Akumaki said Mr. Kwankwaso’s chances of clinching the ticket of the APC were bright not only because of his age, but also because of his experience in politics.
He said, “Now in as much as we agree that Buhari is a man of integrity but you will also agree with me that age is not on his side. He is 73 going to 74 years and Ex-Vice President Atiku Abubakar is about 70 years old. But Kwankwaso will be 58 by October 21st.
“Kwankwaso has long years of experience in politics. He has been a parliamentarian, a governor and two-time minister. When he contested governorship election in Kano state and lost, he congratulated the winner and waited for eight years before staging a come-back to defeat the incumbent. The governor is a grassroots politician and one who tries to carry his followers along in his undertakings.”
Mr. Akumaki also said Mr. Kwankwaso was more positioned educationally than his competitors and that the governor also has strong political structure to actualise his ambition.
He said, “From the angle of qualification, the constitution is very clear on this. A man who has a doctorate in Engineering, academically he is qualified; a man who has not been convicted by any competent court; a man whom the EFCC and other Federal Government anti-graft agencies have investigated and nothing was found on him is eminently qualified to contest for the president of the country.”
The campaign coordinator faulted those who described the Kano State governor as a dark horse in the presidential contest and that he was sure that some members of his former party, the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, would still want him to aspire to the nation’s highest political office, despite defecting from the ruling party to the APC.
The governor’s media aide, Halilu Dantiye could not be reached despite repeated calls to his mobile telephone.