From John Adams, Minna
As the race to the 2023 general elections gathers momentum, all is not well in the camp of the ruling All Progressive Congress (APC) in Niger state as both the party Presidential Campaign Council (PCC) and the Tinubu/Shetima Support Groups have cried out over what they called, their complete marginalization in the preparation ahead of the formal kick of the Presidential campaign proper.
Worst hit in the alleged marginalization is the 42 Support Groups in the state who said both the state party and national party headquarters of the party have distance themselves from the Support Groups with no reference being made to them nor where they carried along.
Also, members of the Presidential Campaign Council (PCC) from the state are equally complaining bitterly, saying that after their inauguration in Abuja barely three weeks ago, nothing has been heard again in terms of communication as to what next.
“Despite that we were invited to Abuja for the inauguration about three weeks ago without food and transportation back to our destination, nothing again has been heard from this People, we are being left in the dark”, a member of the PCC who did not want his name in print, complained.
Following this development, it was reliably gathered that members of 42 Support Groups have decided to stage a peaceful protest on Monday during the visit by the Presidential Candidate, Ahmed Bola Tinubu and his running mate, to register their displeasure over what they called “intentional marginalization” ahead of the formal flag off of the party Presidential Campaign.
The Support Groups include the Bola Ahmed Tinubu Solidarity- SOLIDARITY- VANGUARD, (BATS-V) the oldest of the organizations in the state.
According to a very reliable source close to the organization, its fear of total marginalization was further heightened when neither the State Government nor the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the state, informed the organization of a rally that earlier took place in the state two weeks back.
To further buttress its claim, the Support Groups equally alleged that a member of the Presidential Campaign Committee who heads all the Support Groups in the state was also not aware of the proposed rally slated for Monday in Minna to drum support for Tinubu/Shettima 2023 Presidential ambition.
A very strong member of the Support Groups told our correspondent that “no adequate preparation has been made for the rally by way of erection of large campaign bill boards, advertising and jingles on radio and television and general mobilization of Party Supporters in the State ahead of the rally.
“It appears some people wants the rally to flop that is why they are showing nonchalant attitude to it”.
It was as a result of this that the Support Groups are however planning a protest to make sure the Presidential Candidate, Chief Bola Ahmed Tinubu is aware of the plot by the Government and the APC as a Party in the State to frustrate his 2023 ambition.
“We may carry placards and position ourselves well to ensure our message is delivered to Senator Bola Ahmed Tinubu when he arrives Minna on Monday”
According to another source the cold shoulder being shown to the Support Groups is a follow up to the bad treatment meted out to some of the Party Chieftains in Abuja recently during the formal inauguration of the PCC.
When contacted and official in the office of the Special Adviser on Political Matters in the State who preferred anonymity said “We are not aware of what you are saying. We are not part of any arrangement as far as this visit is concern, and we are not member of the PCC”.
The State Publicity Secretary of the Party, Mallam Musa Sarkin Kaji also denied that Support Groups are being marginalized but did not say what role has been assigned to them. He equally said the party was not carried along in the planned visit by the Presidential Candidate and his running mate as everything is being done in the government house.
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