2015 posters sponsors playing games- Jonathan

THE PUNCH Newspaper

President Goodluck Jonathan on Wednesday described those behind his re-election posters which flooded the Federal Capital City on January 1, 2013 as “playing games.”

Jonathan said he had not launched any re-election campaign and asked the sponsors of his campaign posters to allow him concentrate on the job at hand.

The President who spoke through his spokesman, Reuben Abati, said he needed not to engage “in any form of scaremongering.”

Abati told State House correspondents, “The President has not launched any campaign; he believes that those doing that are playing games.

“There is no reason for the President to engage in any form of scaremongering. He has said that by 2014 his position on the 2015 presidential race wold be made public. Nigerians should wait till then.”

The campaign posters of the President surfaced in several parts of the FCT on New Year Day thus generating public curiosity about Jonathan’s ambition for the 2015 race.

The appearance of the posters in highbrow Asokoro and Wuse areas of Abuja on Tuesday came barely six weeks after the President had said during his occasional media chat that it was too early to talk about the next general election.

The big posters had the President’s portrait in his Ijaw traditional attire with the inscriptions “2015: No Vacancy in Aso Rock. Let’s Do More. One Good Turn Deserves Another. Support Dr. Goodluck Azikwe Jonathan for 2015 Presidency.”

But Abati denied on Wednesday that the Preisdent had a hand in the printing and pasting of the campaign posters.

He said the President’s preoccupation at the moment was how to deliver on his mandate for Nigerians and would not be distracted by the politics of 2015.

He said, “Those pasting the posters are trying to express their own views. The president had stated that he would talk about the presidency from 2014. Those doing these do not have the consent of the president.

“What is most important now is for the president to deliver on his electioneering promise to Nigerians and not to embark on the pasting of posters.

“The posters have not come from the President. Nigerians should take the President for his word and ignore any other information to the contrary.”

Abati however said it would be difficult for the President to take any action against the sponsors or dissuade them since they were unknown.

“We do not know those behind the posters, so the president cannot do anything. Our appeal is that those behind this should allow the President concentrate on the job at hand. The President’s main pre-occupation now is to continue to provide service and quality leadership,” he said.

The Campaign for Democracy on Wednesday described the pasting of Jonathan’s 2015 posters as diversionary.

President of the CD, Joe Okei-Odumakin, however dismissed the “I-have-no-hand-in-it” denial by the Jonathan.

“That is the way of politicians. They keep denying. The pasting of posters smack of high level insensitivity. After two years, he is still saying he does not want to make mistakes,” she said.

Okei-Odumakin however, advised the President to face the business of leadership and shun diversionary tactics.

Spokesman for the Congress for Progressive Change, Rotimi Fashakin, said it was no longer news that the posters of Jonathan’s intention to have a second term “irrespective of his waning popularity” are already surfacing in and around the FCT. Fashakin said, “Though there is no official reaction from the motley of media aides in the Presidency, it is not unlikely that, in the usual shenanigans in the nation’s power corridors, the opposition may likely get some bashing for attempting to distract the President from his much trumpeted ‘transformation agenda.

“If Dr. Jonathan is interested in contesting the Presidency in 2015, we say, why not? However, what is of grave concern is the portent of the posters: ‘No vacancy in Aso-rock in 2015."


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