In a statement from its Director of Publicity and Advocacy, Dr. Hakeem Baba-Ahmed, yesterday, the Forum said: “It has become necessary to address the impression created partly by mischief and partly by genuine confusion about the role of the summoner. NEF in an effort to build consensus among four contenders for the PDP presidential ticket.
“The idea of trying to design a consensus among the applicants came from the applicants themselves. Governors Aminu Tambuwal and Bala Mohammed, former Senate President Bukola Saraki and Mohammed Hayatudeen informed President Badamasi Babangida of their intention and requested the intervention and advice of the elders should their efforts fail to achieve consensus.
“Babangida, in turn, asked Prof. Ango Abdullahi, in his individual capacity, to design and manage a process that could improve a consensus agreement between the four applicants. Abdullahi concluded that assignment and published a detailed report and recommendation, signing it in his individual capacity.
“It is important to make it clear that the entire process did not involve NEF as a group and is not a product of the group. Abdullahi is free to undertake any lawful activity as a citizen, and genuine misunderstandings of his role are understandable.
“NEF is not affiliated with any political party or aspirant and is strongly committed to creating a level playing field, enabling the best leaders to emerge in the 2023 election.
“He has also remained steadfast in his conviction that all parts of the country should play their role freely, without restrictions that offend the principles of inclusion and equity.”
“The Forum believes that the North has excellent candidates whose fate should be left in the hands of party delegates and voters.”