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Is El Rufai Already Eyeing Presidency In 2019? Read This!

It is not clear if President Muhammadu Buhari will seek a second term in office come 2019. This uncertainty has triggered an early move by politicians to take over from him as President of Africa's most populous nation, the Punch reports.

Recall that 74 year old Buhari stayed away for more than seven weeks in the UK to get treatment to an unknown illness igniting concern about his health.

He arrived Nigeria on March 10, but will later depart for UK for continuous treatment, Mr Garba Shehu, his SSA Media and Publicity revealed last week without being specific on when he would leave for further treatment in UK.

According to Punch, Mr El Rufai, a Senior APC official and Governor of Kaduna state granted an interview in Jonnesburg and revealed this;

''All of us are getting distracted by the coterie of ambitious presidential aspirants that are trying to kick-start the political process ahead of the normal timeline,” Bloomberg reports.

A former military leader, Buhari in 2015 became the first politician to unseat an incumbent Nigerian leader in an election. Nearly halfway through his four-year term, he’s struggling to revive growth in an economy that has been hit by a plunge in crude oil revenue and a severe shortage of foreign exchange. Nigeria’s elections commission announced last month that the next presidential vote will be held on Feb. 16, 2019.

El-Rufai said that most ruling party members would like him to seek a second term.

President’s Intentions

“The President is saying nothing about his intentions and many of us that campaigned vigorously for him in 2015 are hoping that his health will improve and stabilise and that he will run again in 2019,” he said. “We need the policy continuity and the stability in the political environment for the country to make progress.”

El-Rufai, a 57-year-old Harvard graduate seen as close to Buhari, argued against a devaluation of the naira, saying it would not benefit Nigeria because it exports almost nothing apart from oil, culled from the Punch.


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