The Bayelsa chapter of the Tinubu/Shettima Independent Campaign Council (ICC) has allayed fears of the impending hijack of Bayelsa’s ministerial slot by politicians who do not belong to the All Progressives Congress (APC).
The support group assured APC members that former President Goodluck Jonathan would not be allowed to nominate Bayelsa’s ministerial candidate.
The ICC said it was inconceivable for Mr Jonathan, one of the leaders of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), to nominate Bayelsa’s representative in the cabinet of President Bola Tinubu.
The ICC’s reaction is sequel to the tension generated in the party by reports suggesting that Mr Jonathan was making attempts to hijack the Bayelsa’s ministerial slot.
The report elicited concerns amongst APC stakeholders in Bayelsa, including members of the influential APC Elders’ Forum, which vehemently condemned the move.
In a statement issued Sunday, Joseph Fafi, the ICC director, appealed to party members who were angry at the report to calm down.
Mr Fafi, who described Mr Tinubu as a thorough person who rewards loyalty, would not allow such injustice and unfairness would be allowed.
Mr Fafi, a former APC chairman in Bayelsa, said, “At this point, everyone needs to calm down. Tinubu is a thorough person and is known to always reward loyalty. It is inconceivable to think that Jonathan would nominate a minister from Bayelsa. While he is an elder statesman, and we accord him that regard, as drivers of Tinubu’s presidential campaign in Bayelsa under the Picshitz of Engr. Preye Aganaba, we know those who supported and those who worked against Tinubu.”
He added, “It was open and incontestable. Giving him the right to produce a minister in this government isn’t among the privileges Tinubu is ready to offer Jonathan.”
The ex-APC chair said Mr Tinubu understood that APC Bayelsa is preparing for a major election and would make appointments to strengthen the party and not empower any PDP mole and stressed that “we are optimistic Tinubu will appoint a core, seasoned and well-qualified party person who would be a huge positive in our gubernatorial elections come November 11.”
Meanwhile, Mr Jonathan, who had frequently met with Mr Tinubu, denied lobbying to nominate a minister for Bayelsa.
In a statement by his spokesman, Ikechukwu Eze, the erstwhile president said his recent meetings with Mr Tinubu had nothing to do with Bayelsa politics but his role as ECOWAS envoy.
Mr Jonathan’s visits to the Presidential Villa were to brief the president on developments in the ECOWAS subregion.