Openly Campaign for Tinubu or Resign," APC Urges Ngige
Ngige had said that his decision on who to support between Tinubu and Obi would be made during the presidential election in 2023.
The Deputy National Publicity Secretary of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Murtala Ajaka, has said that the Minister of Labour and Employment, Chris Ngige must openly support the party’s presidential candidate, Bola Tinubu, defend the party or resign from the APC-led government.
Ajaka while reacting to Ngige’s expression of uncertainty regarding who to endorse between Tinubu and the presidential candidate of the Labour Party, Peter Obi, said any appointee of the APC government who fails to support and defend the party and its candidates must resign.
Though Tinubu is the national leader of the APC, Ngige's party, he is from Southwest Nigeria but Obi and Ngige are from the same state in the Southeast. Both of them are former governors of the state. Religious and regional affiliations play a significant role in Nigeria's politics.
Ngige had said that his decision on who to support between Tinubu and Obi would be made during the presidential election in 2023, adding that declaring his choice now is difficult as both candidates are his good friends.
However, Ajaka in a statement on Saturday said, “It is expected of a serving minister in an APC government to be a trusted Apostle of Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s presidency in 2023, who along other party leaders laboured to ensure the enthronement of the same government in 2015 which they are now serving in.
“Chief Ngige and other APC appointees, especially in the federal cabinet should not forget in a hurry that they are holding onto the party’s mandate, hence the need to protect it with whatever it requires, but if they can no longer protect the interest of the APC in public and that of our presidential candidate (Tinubu), I think the honourable thing to do is to step aside from the government formed by the APC.
“With this type of public comment from a sitting minister in a ruling party who cannot declare on national television his choice of a presidential candidate, how on earth is the party expected to fare in the forthcoming presidential election?”
Ngige was billed to contest the APC presidential primary election along with Tinubu and others but weeks before the primaries the minister pulled out of the 2023 presidential race to retain his seat in President Muhammadu Buhari's cabinet.