Ciroma not representing northerners, says President’s aide

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    Tasks opposition on campaign

    THE presidential aide on National Assembly Matters, Senator Mohammed Abba Aji, has cautioned Mallam Adamu Ciroma, leader of the Northern Political Leaders’ Forum (NPLF), against claiming to be representing the North in his political statements and activities, saying doing so will amount to “impersonation”.

    Aji also cautioned opposition parties and politicians against what he termed “unnecessary court litigations” to stop candidates of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) from contesting the forthcoming general elections in the country.

    The presidential aide spoke with journalists yesterday in Maiduguri, Borno State capital, on the dangers and implications of opposition parties’ litigations on Nigeria’s nascent democracy and 2011 general elections.

    Ciroma, according to him, does not have the mandate of the North, which he always claimed to have for he was never appointed by any group in the North to lead them, but rather by a group of presidential aspirants.

    He said: “Ciroma does not speak for northern Nigeria, he is not representing the Arewa or the people from North. His primary election victory has shown that President Goodluck Jonathan is loved by the North. Look at what happened where Atiku was defeated in all the states of the North-East”. He stated that Jonathan has a broad base support for him to get that kind of vote during the PDP presidential primary.

    According to Aji, even the five northern states of Sokoto, Zamfara, Kano, Kebbi and Niger, which the President lost at the PDP presidential primary election to Atiku Abubakar would, however, be won at the forthcoming polls.

    The politicians, he said, should campaign, contest and win elections through the ballot box instead of waiting to take victory through courts and other unnecessary litigations against PDP candidates at the national and state levels.

    He said: “Apart from President Goodluck Jonathan who is currently undertaking campaign tours across the 36 states in the country, other candidates seem to have other ideas on how to win the election as they have shunned the tedious campaigns.

    “None of the presidential candidates is campaigning at the moment and that indicates that they have something off their sleeves, which perhaps is waiting for the court to give them victory after Nigerians might have rejected them”.

    Aji, therefore, urged Nigerians to stand against “the antics of these politicians who are encouraged by the action of courts annulling elections in recent times”. He stressed that “votes should count for something and legal technicality should take the backdrop”.

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    Ciroma not representing northerners, says President’s aide