Governor Atiku Bagudu of Kebbi has absolved President Muhammadu Buhari of wrongdoing over the All Progressive Congress (APC) meeting held inside Aso Villa in Abuja.
Atiku Bagudu, Chairman of the Progressives Governors Forum, told newsmen in Birnin Kebbi that the president did not violate any constitutional provision.
Buhari and the APC were criticized for holding a party meeting within the precinct of the presidential workplace.
But the governor stated that the constitution provided that whoever leads Nigeria must be a member of a political party before becoming the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
He said it is the party that sponsors people “and has an obligation for anybody, who is a president, who contested on its platform. Hence belonging to a political party is not partisanship”.
Atiku pointed out that this was created by the qualifying section of the constitution, without which a president cannot contest the presidency or any political position.
“So, this partisanship, if belonging to a political party can be described as such, is constitutional as it is imposed upon us by the constitution,’’ he added.
The governor said Buhari would have possibly won if the law had allowed him to contest as an independent candidate because of his popularity.
“But unfortunately, the Nigerian Constitution necessitates that aspirants can only contest on a party’s platform and Buhari contested on such platform, won and took the oath of office.”
The Kebbi helmsman said he doesn’t know of “any sentence in that oath of office that could have been violated by the president, attending a political party meeting in a virtual manner”.
He explained that the COVID-19 pandemic made Buhari adjust his itineraries so that he can participate in virtual meetings, as part of his official duties.
The governor added that the president must also attend the activities of his party as he has to pay his dues for being a member.