President Muhammadu Buhari and the National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Adams Oshiomhole, yesterday met behind closed doors at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
Speaking with State House correspondents after the meeting, Oshiomhole said that the APC was fully ready to flag off the campaigns soon.
According to him, the party’s campaign for the 2019 presidential election will focus on character and integrity of the key candidates.
He said, “We are fully ready. We have done our primaries and filled our nominations.
“As you know, INEC still has a window between now and First of January to deal with issues of substitution.
“As of campaigns, we are ready.
“We are going to announce the date and programme for our campaigns, and speak on the issues.
“My idea of kick-off will be the day we will do our first presidential rally where Mr. President, as our candidate, and other candidates and party leaders will assemble in a venue that will be agreeable to all of us.
“There will be two sets of messages; one on what we have done in the past, without failing to remind people of where we were before, what we are going to do in the next three years, and a couple of things we believe we will be doing differently.
“Why we are a better choice? President Buhari, if compared to the rest of the aspirants, there is no basis to compare day and night.
“The real issue in this election is not going to be religion. It is not going to be about political party. Central to the issue and given our past experience as a country, we know that what makes a difference is the character, the integrity of the candidates.
“All those issues of character, especially looking at the past, the key candidates in the election are not strangers to governance. They are not even strangers to this villa. So, we will be able to ask a couple of questions about what they know now that they didn’t know then when they had power.
“This edition is going to be focusing on character, integrity of those who want to govern us. In addition to what and how they will do things differently.”
Oshiomhole also dismissed the allegations of corruption levelled against him by Senator Shehu Sani.
Sani had accused him of collecting bribe up to $2 million to manipulate the senatorial primaries of Kaduna Central zone.
On the crisis facing the Imo APC governorship candidate, Senator Hope Uzodimma, he said there was no crisis.
He said: “What is the crisis? That somebody won and somebody lost and the person who lost said no, no, no, I am the son-in-law to the governor, I can’t lose, and therefore we have crisis?
“Go to Imo and find out. Go to the markets, mechanic workshops or even the civil servants in Imo and ask how they think on the issue of son-in-law.
“Look at the crowd that received Senator Hope Uzodimma. It was a mixture of both rejection of dynasty vis a vis the natural support base that Hope has.
“Haven’t you seen on social media how excited Imolites erected the statue of Oshiomhole, although the body is big.”