The presidency has criticised an elder stateman, Tanko Yakasai for questioning President Muhammadu Buhari’s commitment to the All Progressives Congress (APC) presidential candidate Bola Tinubu.
In a statement by Garba Shehu, the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity released on Wednesday, the presidency said Mr Yakasai is unknown to the party.
Mr Shehu said the frontline politician’s support for Mr Tinubu has no value.
“Alhaji Tanko Yakasai is unknown to the All Progressives Congress, APC. Everyone is entitled to their view, but what we do know is that his insight in a recent interview does not come from within the party or the President’s team. His support for Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu is welcome although it is difficult to see what value it will add.
“He is right to highlight his experience as a senior citizen, a leader in government and ability to reach out across divides are strong foundations for the highest office,” he said.
Mr Shehu said Mr Yakasai’s comment about the president’s loyalty is in contrast with the reality.
He said Mr Yakasai was wrong and no one should take him serious.
“But Yakasai’s questioning of the loyalties of President Muhammadu Buhari stands in sharp contrast to the actions of the President. Only on Monday, he was out at a rally in Bauchi supporting the flag bearer of the party. Presidential duties permitting, he is scheduled to make further appearances at campaign events in the coming weeks.
”His support for the party’s candidate, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu is unquestioned. If this wasn’t on TV, Yakasai’s unwise comment on the issue would have been dismissed as a misquotation. But he was live on TV. On this one against President Buhari, no one should take him seriously.
“Perhaps times are hard and the old man needs a bit of help,” Mr Shehu added.
Mr Yakasai was reported to have said he felt Mr Buhari was not in support of Mr Tinubu’s candidature.
Mr Yakasai, who was a former commissioner and ex presidential aide, made the statement during an interview with Control TV on Monday.
He expressed doubt over the president’s commitment and said the personality of Mr Tinubu didn’t make the president happy.
“What I realise is that I’m not sure if Buhari is happy with the candidature of Tinubu. That is the issue. He is (in) APC because he is the president elected on the platform of the APC but is he committed to Tinubu’s presidency? I have my doubt.
“I don’t know but I have not seen the commitment from him of supporting the candidature of Tinubu in APC. I’m not sure if it’s APC or not but definitely, the personality of Tinubu doesn’t make him happy from my assessment of the situation,” he said.
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