Shinkafi: Yari Not Qualified to Contest APC Chairmanship

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*I won’t join issues with an ‘errand boy’, ex-gov replies

Onyebuchi Ezigbo in Abuja

One of the new entrants into the All Progressives Congress (APC) national chairmanship race, Alhaji Sani Abdulahi Shinkafi, has said a former governor of Zamfara State, Abdulazeez Yari, who was also aspiring to the office, was technically not qualified to be in the race, because he was no longer a registered member of the party.

Shinkafi, who claimed there were no factions in the APC in Zamfara, insisted that Yari could not be a threat to his ambition to lead the party as he was no longer a card-carrying member of the party.

But Yari, who said he would not join issues with Shinkafi, however, dismissed his place in the state’s body polity, describing him as a ‘noisemaker’ and an ‘errand boy’.

However, in a statement in Abuja, Shinkafi said, he was in the race to win and not to act as a spoiler to Yari as was being insinuated.

“I am in the race because I know that I am eminently qualified to lead the party at this period of its development and not to act as a lackey for anybody. I want to state categorically that Abdulazeez Yari is technically disqualified to run for the leadership of the APC, having failed to register in the just concluded revalidation exercise, so, having failed to register, he is not a card-carrying member of the party,” he said.

On the issue of zoning of political offices by the party, Shinkafi noted that as a loyal party member, he would abide by the decision of the leadership of the party.

After reeling off his profile and why he was qualified, Shinkafi said, “As I present myself to contest the position of the National chairman of our great party, it is pertinent to reflect on what constitutes the APC, All Progressives Congress (APC) as a progressive party, which represent the collective will of over 41 million registered members of the party in all the 36 states of the federation and federal capital territory (FCT) Abuja.

“It is my hope that if and when elected as National Chairman of the party, we will reposition and reorganise the party based on its philosophy of social democracy, which basically means people-oriented, membership mobilisation and recruitment and mass-based political organisation.

“To be able to actualise these into concrete action that is visible and verifiable under our national leadership, we will have to do a couple of things differently in the day-to-day management of the party affairs, while interfacing with all those elected on the platform of the party at all levels” he added.

However, Yari, in a statement by his Chief of Staff, Abdullahi Tsare, insisted that he was a registered member of the APC with his membership card obtained by him.

Yari added that he remained the only known chairmanship aspirant coming from Zamfara State and the North West geo-political zone, and therefore called on the party and general public to disregard any ‘noisemaker’ claiming to be an aspirant under APC.

“There was never a time Abdulaziz was a friend to this errand boy of some disgruntled elements. Therefore, his pay masters should come out so that His Excellency can face them one on one. We urge the public to ignore the chanting of an errand boy, who will stop at nothing than to cause confusion in the public, simply to mislead the teaming supporters of His Excellency, Abdulaziz Yari, and to further attract large sums from his pay masters. He is not serious in the race of being the national chairman of our great party APC,” he said.

Yari noted that Shinkafi was in APGA throughout the 16 years period of PDP rule; adding that for the period, he caused a lot of trouble, noting that APGA as a party was in a better position to give a detailed account of what Shinkafi represented.

According to him, “If not, why should anybody explain to the public that someone, who was a governor did not have a membership registration of the party he worked so tirelessly to form, and during that period, Shinkafi was in APGA. It was when Matawalle defected that Sani cross-carpeted to join his pay masters.”

Yari, therefore, called on the Mai Mala Buni-led caretaker committee to be more circumspect in its dealings, and should not allow the likes of Shinkafi to come to the party’s national headquarters to make noise, knowing full well that he was an unserious person, given his antecedents in APGA.