President Muhammadu Buhari on Wednesday engaged in a lengthy meeting with top APC leaders in the presidential villa. The meeting was held inside the First Lady’s Conference Hall at the Presidential Villa, Abuja started at about 9:10pm and ended in the early hours of Thursday.
Buhari was accompanied by Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo; the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Mr. Babachir Lawal; the Special Adviser to the President on Political Matters, Babafemi Ojudu; and some other presidential aides.
Party leaders who attended the meeting included the party’s National Chairman, Chief John Odigie-Oyegun; the party’s Deputy National Chairman, North, Senator Lawali Shuaibu; Deputy National Chairman, South, Segun Oni; President of the Senate, Bukola Saraki; and Speaker of the House of Others were Governor Rochas Okorocha of Imo State; Governor Abdulaziz Yari of Zamfara State; Senate Leader, Ali Ndume; a former Minister of Information, Chief Tony Momoh; Minister of Science and Technology, Ogbonnaya Onu; and the Minister of Agriculture, Audu Ogbeh.
A national leader of the party, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu; and former Vice-President Atiku Abubakar were conspicuously absent at the meeting. The agenda of the meeting was not made public.
At the end of the meeting, both the Presidency and the party leadership refused to disclose details of the meeting to State House correspondents who kept vigil at the venue.
When approached, Ojudu simply said, “It was a meeting of the leaders of the party. What we discussed was very private, there is no communique. We just discussed generally about governance and issues of the party. There is nothing to communicate to you about.”
Odigie-Oyegun also evaded questions when he simply replied, “The meeting was for routine matters, for usual stuff: party, government and everything,” as he made his way out of the venue.
It will be recalled that a similar meeting of the party leaders presided over by Osinbajo was held on February 24 at a time Buhari was on a one-week trip to Saudi Arabia and Qatar.
That first meeting was attended by Tinubu, Atiku; former chairman of the party, Chief Bisi Akande; and the Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives, Yusuf Lasun.
They also did not brief journalists at the end of the first meeting.