Indications have emerged that President Muhammadu Buhari is making fresh moves to woo National Leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Asiwaju Bola Tinubu.
Before the President’s recent moves, the relationship between the duo had not been as rosy. Findings showed that Buhari decided to reach out to Tinubu to seek his support for the control of the party.
It was gathered that Tinubu was not happy with some of the appointments the President had been making since his inauguration on May 29 last year.
Investigations by PUNCH revealed that among those the APC leader had tipped for appointments under the Buhari administration were a former Commissioner for Finance in Lagos State, Mr. Wale Edun, and a former Commissioner for Budget and National Planning, Mr. Yemi Cardoso.
A member of the APC National Working Committee, who confided in Saturday PUNCH, said that Tinubu had been loyal to Buhari.
According to him, Tinubu was fighting Buhari’s battle when he decided to support Senator Ahmed Lawan and move against Senator Bukola Saraki for the senate presidency.
The national officer stated that Buhari was well aware of the fact that Tinubu had been loyal to him since he (Buhari) joined the presidential race.
He said, “You will recall that Tinubu was initially supporting George Akume for the senate president position, but he switched over to Lawan when it became obvious that that was the man the President preferred. Also, many APC members are aware that Tinubu lost out in ministerial and many of the appointments made by the President.”
Another prominent member of the party told PUNCH that Tinubu had been maintaining what he described as a “siddon look” attitude towards the President before now.
He said prominent members of the party were worried that the president failed to consider the APC leader’s candidates for appointments.
A Presidency source, who confirmed the recent moves by Buhari, said that the President was not unaware of what the APC national leader did for him.
The source stated that Buhari’s reaching out to Tinubu was borne out of the alleged subtle moves by elements in the party, including a former Kano State Governor, Rabiu Kwankwaso, to reposition themselves for the 2019 presidential race.
Another top APC member said, “Buhari needs the support of Tinubu to survive the onslaught of elements that want to seize the control of the party ahead of the 2019 elections.”
The party chieftain stated that in boards and other appointments that would be made by the President in the months ahead, Tinubu’s loyalists would be taken care of as a way of wooing the APC leader.
He said, “Although the President is not somebody who can be dictated to, he is not an ungrateful person. He is aware of the role played by Tinubu in his election and he will not abandon the man.”