NIGERIA’S First Lady, Dr. Aisha Muhammadu Buhari has invited all presidential aspirants from various political parties to a meeting on Saturday at the State House Conference Centre, Abuja.
The meeting, it was gathered, was for Iftar. Iftar is the meal eaten after sunset to break fast during Ramadan.
The invitees were instructed not to come along with their mobile devices, except their invitation cards which would serve as their entry pass.
Those that have indicated interest to contest the 2023 presidential elections include Vice President Yemi Osinbajo; former Vice President Atiku Abubakar; All Progressives Congress, APC, national leader, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu; former Governor of Anambra state, Peter Obi, and former presidents of Senate, Anyim Pius Anyim and Bukola Saraki.
Others are the Governor of Rivers State, Nyesom Wike; his Ebonyi state counterpart, Dave Umahi; that of Sokoto and Bauchi States, Aminu Tambuwal and Bala Mohammed, respectively.
Former Governor of Imo State, Rochas Okorocha; Minister of Labour and Employment, Senator Chris Ngige, among others, have also indicated interest to contest the 2023 presidential elections.
There’s nothing to it — Presidency
However, the directive of not coming to the venue with phones will not apply to the Vice President Yemi Osinbajo and other governors and ministers, who are expected to be at the meeting, it was reliably learned.
Confirming the invitation, the Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Office of the Wife of the President, Aliyu Abdullahi, said: “There is nothing here.
“This is a standard operational protocol in the Villa when you are having either of the three occupants of the Presidency.
“If they are coming for an event, this is supposed to be DSS enforced.
“Whether the President is having an event or the Vice President is having an event or the first lady is having an event; because outsiders will come.
“That’s the security and standard protocol.
“That does not apply to the Vice President. How can you expect that to apply to the Vice President or even to ministers?”