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Patience Jonathan makes u-turn, supports Gov Dickson re-election

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patience jonathan

There are strong indications former First Lady, Dame Patience Jonathan, has buried the hatchet with Governor Seriake Dickson of Bayelsa State, who is seeking a second term on the platform of Peoples Democratic Party.

When her husband, ex-President Goodluck Jonathan was in power, speculations were rife that the former first lady had vowed to frustrate Dickson’s re-election bid.

Towards this end, she severed any ties she had with the governor, including resigning her controversial position as a permanent secretary in one of the state’s ministries.

Dickson, in retaliation, reportedly fired some loyalists of the former president’s wife serving in his government.

Despite public denials of a cold-war between them, close watchers of political events in the state insisted that

Dickson and Mrs. Jonathan were in a long drawn battle of wits and supremacy.

However, as the December 5 date for the governorship election in Bayelsa draws nearer, coupled with the growing popularity of the All Progressives Congress, whose fortune was boosted with the recent defection of some PDP chieftains in the state to its fold, it was learnt that Mrs. Jonathan retraced her steps to avoid another political humiliation of her husband and his party on home turf.

Other associates opined that the ex-first lady’s decision to reconcile with Governor Dickson was based on the series of interventions by some Bayelsa elders, including another former Governor, Chief Diepreye Alamieyeseigha.

Due to this change of mind, Patience was said to have directed her followers and loyalists, including former Special Adviser to the President on Domestic Matters, Dr. Waripamowei Dudafa to work towards victory for the PDP.
Dudafa is said to be at loggerheads with Dickson over his alleged anti-PDP activities and sponsorship of some candidates of the All Progressives Grand Alliance.

It was further learnt that the decision of the former first lady to set aside her differences with the governor had led to a major boost in his re-election bid as he is set to pick the PDP ticket.

A close relative of Jonathan and former State Commissioner for Special Duties (Federal Project), Mike Ogiasa, confirmed processes that led to the reconciliation between the governor and Mrs. Jonathan.

He said, “The Jonathans are not known to me. As a close family member, I know her very well. She can suppress her anger against someone and do the right thing. As I am talking to you, I believe, as a typical PDP woman, she can never support another political party against the choice of the PDP.

“In politics, there is unity in diversity. People disagree to agree. It was not a hidden fact that Governor Dickson was at loggerheads with Dame Patience Jonathan. But it is also true that by human nature, she may not have supported Dickson. But she has weighed it and discovered that the election is beyond Dickson.

“And because she is from Bayelsa and Rivers States, she knows what it took the Rivers man to retain the PDP leadership. She cannot now because of anger allow Bayelsa to be under the APC.

“Though I don’t know who she is supporting but I know that she can never vote the APC against the PDP. If anyone emerges above Dickson at the PDP primaries, she will support the person and if Dickson emerges as flag bearer, I am hundred per cent sure she will support him”.

The ex-commissioner also explained that Jonathan’s silence should not be termed to be anti-party posture against the PDP ahead of the forthcoming governorship primaries and election.

He added, “I don’t know how to read body language. But I know that it is not only a body language but a mouth language that the former President cannot support another party against the PDP. If you rely on body language to tell the thinking of Jonathan, you may misjudge him, but I know there is no way he would support APC to take over Bayelsa”.

Though he said he did not know who Jonathan was supporting, Ogiasa maintained that it would definitely be the PDP.

He said the former president knew the importance of second term, stressing that on his part, if Jonathan was supporting Dickson for second term, there was nothing wrong with it.

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POLITICS

2023 Presidency: El-Rufai opens up on why Buhari loves Amaechi

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Governor Nasir El-Rufai of Kaduna State has disclosed why President Muhammadu Buhari loves Rotimi Amaechi, the outgone Minister of Transportation.

Rufai disclosed that Buhari loves Amaechi due to his decision to defect from the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, to the All Progressives Congress, APC, during the era of former President Goodluck Jonathan.

He disclosed this when Amaechi met with APC delegates from Kaduna ahead of the party’s national convention.

El-Rufai recalled wooing Amaechi and some other governors into the APC during the PDP administration.

“Let me tell you my history with Amaechi. When we started discussing with the G-7, the seven governors that wanted to defect to the APC, I was holding nocturnal meetings with Amaechi and Governor Nyako of Adamawa State until we got five of them to move to our party, and that was the game-changer.

“And for you to understand how difficult it is, imagine Amaechi of Rivers State from the same South-South with incumbent President Jonathan.

“He made the sacrifice to move to our party. It was a game-changer. This is part of the reason President Buhari loves Minister Amaechi till tomorrow,” El-Rufai said.

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2023: Amosun denies stepping down for Tinubu

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Amosun denies stepping down for Bola Tinubu

Former Governor of Ogun State, Senator Ibikunle Amosun has denied stepping down from the 2023 presidential election for the national leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Bola Tinubu.

Amosun stated that he is not in the presidential race to align with Tinubu or any other aspirant of the APC.

Amosun also denied obtaining the APC senatorial form, saying he did not attend the screening exercise organised for APC senatorial aspirants, as being peddled by some individuals.

There were rumours over the weekend that Amosun had agreed to step down for Tinubu, having been screened and cleared for the Ogun Central senatorial race.

But, in a swift reaction, Amosun debunked the rumour spreading on social media, saying the “two news stories are false.”

According to a statement signed by his media aide, Bola Adeyemi, he said that the Ogun Central Senator “procured only the forms for the presidential ticket of the APC and did not attend the screening exercise for Senatorial aspirants because he is not one.”

While urging Nigerians to dismiss the “false news”, Adeyemi maintained that “Amosun is in the race for the presidential ticket of the APC and has no plans to align with any politician in the race.”

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Women affairs Minister, Pauline Tallen withdraws from senatorial race

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Dame Pauline Tallen, Minister of Women Affairs, has dropped her senatorial ambition.

Tallen made this known in a statement she issued on Monday.

The minister had purchased the All Progressives Congress (APC) form to contest the Plateau South Senatorial election.

According to her, after consultations with her constituents, she has decided to withdraw from the race.

The statement read in part: “I remain resolute as I continue to relish the opportunity to serve Nigerian Women in my capacity as Minister of Women Affairs under the able leadership of President Muhammadu Buhari.

“Consequently, I wish to inform you all that following broad-based consultations and interventions from critical stakeholders, I have decided to withdraw from running for the senatorial seat, mindful of our accomplishments and the notable progress we have recorded under my stewardship at the Federal Ministry of Women Affairs.”

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