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JUST IN: Tinubu’s presidential bid suffers setbacks after campaign director dumps APC

By Monsurudeen Olowoopejo

Efforts by the National leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC) and frontline presidential aspirant, Bola Tinubu, to woo more delegates from the north ahead of the party’s primary may have suffered major setbacks after Director-General of his campaign group, Abdulmumin Jibrin, dumped the APC.

Jibrin, who had been the brain behind Tinubu Support Group, said that he has done enough for the APC and that it was time for him to move on and further his political ambition.

The campaign boss, who announced his plans on Saturday in a short statement released through his social media accounts, stated that his next move would be made public within another 24 hours.

The former federal lawmaker, who represented Kiru/Bebeji Federal Constituency of Kano State at the House of Representatives, indicated that he left not because there was rancor between him and the state governor, Umar Ganduje, but would like to try other political parties.

“I have done my best for APC. It’s time to move on. I will announce my new political party within the next 24 hours Insha Allah. I will make a formal statement in due course,” he tweeted.

Jibrin’s announcement came after the Supreme Court upheld Governor Abdullahi Ganduje-led factional leadership of the APC as the authentic and that they have right to occupy the party’s secretariat.

The apex court, in a lead judgment delivered by Justice Inyang Okoro, on Friday, held that the appeal against the earlier judgments of the Court of Appeal in Abuja lacked merit and as such dismissed.

The appeals followed two rulings of an FCT High Court which upheld ward and local government congresses won by the faction loyal to Ibrahim Shekarau and Senator Jibril Barau (Kano North) and numbering 17,908 and 1,319 members, respectively.

A faction of the APC loyal to former Kano State governor, Shekarau had been in a leadership battle with the Ganduje’s group. And while Ganduje’s group produced Abdullahi Abbas as state chairman, Shekarau’s camp elected Haruna Danzago to the same position.

The Court of Appeal had in February dismissed three appeals that were lodged over the originating summons wrongly commenced in Abuja. It ruled in favour of the Ganduje’s faction and also said the lower court had no jurisdiction as only the leadership of a political party could resolve disputes arising from its internal affairs, in line with its constitution.

An Abuja High Court voided the congresses following a challenge in the suit filed by a group led by Shekarau. The two factions had held parallel congresses and produced two sets of state executives on Oct. 18, 2021.

The national leadership of the party, however, recognised the congresses of the Ganduje group, leading to the other faction heading to the court to challenge the party’s stance.

The FCT High Court, on November 30, declared the congress conducted by the plaintiffs as valid and the officials it produced as the duly elected leaders of the APC in the state.

It similarly, on December 17, affirmed its decision by rejecting a motion filed by the Ganduje faction asking the court to stay the execution and set aside the judgment.

The judge, Hamza Muazu, further imposed a fine of N1 million against the plaintiffs for filing “a frivolous and time-wasting motion” by asking the court to set aside its judgment and stay the execution on the local government congresses.

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