The new National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Abdullahi Ganduje, says he will hit the ground running to ensure the victory of the ruling party in the November 11, 2023 governorship polls in Imo, Kogi and Bayelsa.
Ganduje spoke on Thursday during his acceptance speech as the party’s chair after his emergence at the 12th APC National Executive Committee (NEC) meeting held at the Congress Hall of Transcorp Hilton in Abuja.
The party’s NEC also elected former Senate spokesman, Ajibola Basiru, from Osun State as its National Secretary.
Addressing party leaders after his emergence, Ganduje thanked President Bola Tinubu and promised that internal democracy would prevail in the party during his tenure.
The ex-governor of Kano State pledged to ensure a scientific register of party members and pay utmost attention to election management and conflict resolution.
According to him, there would be level playing field for all party members during party primaries.
Ganduje promised to hit the ground running to ensure victory for the party in the three forthcoming off-season governorship elections in Kogi, Imo and Bayelsa.
Bayelsa, Imo and Kogi are three of the eight states with off-season governorship elections due to past litigations and court judgements. Others are Anambra, Edo, Ekiti, Osun and Ondo.
In the general elections earlier this year, the APC won the presidential poll and 16 state governorship polls leaving the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) with 10, the Labour Party (LP) with one state and the New Nigeria Peoples Party (NNPP) also with a state.
For the November 11, 2023 governorship poll in Kogi, the APC is fielding a former Auditor General of Local Government in the state, Usman Ododo.
In Bayelsa, the party is fielding the immediate past Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Timipre Sylva, while incumbent Governor of Imo State, Hope Uzodimma, is throwing his hat into the ring for a second term in office.
Interestingly, the new APC chairman was unable to secure a win for his party in the March 18, 2023 governorship election as NNPP’s Yusuf Kabir and ally of NNPP presidential candidate, Rabiu Kwankwaso, trounced Ganduje’s man, Nasir Gawuna.
Kabir scored 1,019,602 votes to defeat his closest contender, Gawuna, of the APC who polled 890,705 votes. In the February 25 poll, the APC also lost to the NNPP.