Former President Goodluck Jonathan is considering running on the All Progressives Congress ticket following a two-hour meeting with leaders and members of the Fulani community, who secured the N100 million presidential nomination forms for him According to Vanguard News Paper
According to reports, the former president met with Fulani pastoralists between 11 p.m. and 1 a.m. on Monday and Tuesday to resolve issues related to their purchase of presidential nomination forms without his consent, an occurrence that prompted him to reject the offer and denounce those involved in the action.
“We wish to declare unequivocally that Dr. Jonathan was unaware of this bid and did not authorise it,” Jonathan’s communications aide Ikechukwu Eze said in a statement.
At the meeting with the Fulani community in Abuja, the chairman of the team that got the form for him, Dr. Ibrahim Abdullahi, reportedly apologised to the former president and begged him to forgive their error and accept the invitation to run.
According to reports, the pastoralists informed Jonathan that they purchased the form as a token of their gratitude for the N60 billion he invested in Almajiris schools and investment opportunities during his term.
A source at the meeting revealed that after listening to the Fulani community’s request, Jonathan grudgingly agreed to consider running for the APC ticket, as indicated by them, and promised to provide a response as soon as possible, but did not specify a date.
Given his status in Nigeria and the world community, the former president urged the Fulani community to never undertake a political mission on his behalf without first consulting with him.
Jonathan reportedly informed the Fulani delegation that he felt insulted by the purchase of a nomination form for him as if he were an ordinary citizen, a move he deemed beneath his rank as the former president of Nigeria.
The bulk of the inner caucus of the former president’s loyalists, who had violently opposed his running on the APC platform, gradually retracted their stance and gave him the go light to proceed.
In order to fulfil the deadline for submitting the form to the party’s secretariat in Abuja, a number of Jonathan’s top supporters are said to have collaborated with the Fulani community to complete the APC presidential nomination form for Jonathan.
“I can tell you that Jonathan’s supporters span political lines, and the vast majority of them have been supporting him to run for office. According to a credible source, this is why some of them are assisting with the preparation of the nomination form for the former president.
“The Fulani Group of Ten, chaired by Dr. Ibrahim Abdullahi, stated that they purchased the form out of the goodness of their hearts as a means of repaying former president Jonathan for his kindness while in office.