The National Chairman of the New Nigeria Peoples Party (NNPP), Prof Rufai Alkali, has condemned the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) for denying the majority of Nigerians the opportunity to vie for the presidential ticket of the party as a result of the N100 million expression of interest and nomination forms.
Alkali said this while speaking on Trust Tv’s Daily Politics on Tuesday night.
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The expression of interest and nomination forms for the president on the platform of the ruling party is N100 million while those for the governorship position are N50 million.
He said, “The question I kept asking myself is that was the president aware of this? My thinking is that he is not aware because he is the kind of person who will not allow this to happen because he is mindful of wastefulness, because he’s mindful of integrity, he is mindful of managing scarce resources.
“His party is supposed to be an example. If we had put our own at N100 million and they put their own at N30 million, they will challenge us and even take us to court.
“Out of 100 per cent of Nigerians, you are talking about 99.9 per cent (of Nigerians being excluded).
“When we talk about inclusivity, by that price alone, they have excluded 99.9 per cent of the population.
“I think the message that is being conveyed is not that the party wanted money because they have other ways of collecting money for the party. I think it’s an exclusive club of only who is who.”
While lamenting that the aspirants were even spending mmore money, to convince delegates and campaign around the country, Alkali said by the action of the ruling party, the price for being a president has been increased.
“The terrain has changed. Now you have to have money, real money,” he added.
He said the ruling party had failed to lead by example in a country where there is poverty, hunger and diseases.
The NNPP’s national chairman said it was wrong to compare his party with the APC at their formative stages, saying APC members were “strange bedfellows” while members of the NNPP are people of like minds working to rescue the country.
He added, “In NNPP, nobody is going to be excluded including women and youths. How can you allow the most active set of your population redundant?”
He said NNPP is solving the problem of exclusivity by making the Expression of Interest form free for Youth, women and the disabled while also demanding just 50 per cent of the price of the nomination form from the youth and women.