2015: Northern Union woos Obasanjo, others

Some Northern leaders have reached out to former President Olusegun Obasanjo for his support in ensuring that power returns to the North in 2015.

The Northern leaders under the auspices of the Northern Union (NU), it was gathered, visited Obasanjo in his Abeokuta residence last weekend to discuss the matter.

The leaders, a source told The Nation, pleaded with Obasanjo to support the aspiration of the North to produce the PDP presidential candidate for the 2015 election.

The decision to approach the former President, it was gathered, was taken at a meeting of northern political elite held in Kaduna last month in the build- up to the next presidential race.

The calculation of the northern leaders is that securing the support of the former President will boost the chances of the region to secure the party’s ticket and also give its presidential aspiration a national appeal.

The team that met with Obasanjo, The Nation learnt, included Alhaji Ahmad Adamu, Ambassador Aliko Daniyan, Alhaji Hussein Kaltungo and Dr. Joseph Hembe.

The team relayed a message from prominent northern elders appealing to Obasanjo to support the region’s quest to produce the next president of the country.

The source said:”The northern leaders met Baba (Obasanjo) during the week. It was an unscheduled visit but he received them warmly. They brought a message from northern elite soliciting his support for their desire to produce a Nigerian President of northern extraction.

“Baba (Obasanjo) received them in the presence of some other leaders of the ruling party in the Southwest who had come to see him for another matter. The parley lasted for more than an hour and details of the discussions are still very sketchy but I can tell you that the 2015 presidential election was discussed.”

It is unclear how the former President responded to the request of the NU team but our source said the delegation departed Abeokuta a few hours after their arrival with the explanation that they wanted to visit Lagos and Ibadan to meet with other leaders of the party in the Southwest, suggesting that Obasanjo may not be the only leader being wooed by the North ahead of the 2015 presidential contest.

“The team said they were going to Lagos and Ibadan for discussion with other prominent party leaders. They also promised to repeat their visit to Baba very soon as there is need to keep him abreast of developments,” our source said.