The candidate of the All Progressives Congress for Yobe north senatorial district, Bashir Machina, has insisted that he will not withdraw from the race.
Machina, in an interview with Channels Television, said the senate president, Ahmad Lawan, did not plan to return to the national assembly.
Lawan had been representing Yobe north senatorial district at the national assembly since 2007.
He contested the APC presidential ticket but lost after polling 152 votes, while the eventual winner, Bola Tinubu, scored 1,271 votes.
With the window for primaries now closed, the development means that Lawan would not be on the ballot for any elective position in 2023, and this had sparked speculations that Machina might resign his candidacy for the senate president.
But the APC candidate had earlier said he would not step down for Lawan, adding that some people have approached him to withdraw from the senatorial race.
Asked during the interview to reveal those behind the speculations on his withdrawal from the race, Machina said such persons are politicians who contested certain positions that they were not prepared for.
Machina insisted that he would not withdraw from the race since he got the votes of delegates in an unopposed election.
He said, “Maybe some politicians who aren’t prepared to contest for certain elections, got themselves contesting the elections thinking that maybe somehow or somewhere, that would come across some luck to win the ticket.
“People who are not certainly fit enough to contest certain offices, maybe they were contemplating that they would get back their actual level.”
Asked to react to the comment that Lawan should be allowed to return to the senate because of his experience, Machina said the senate president did not plan a return to the national assembly before he declared to run for president.
“Well, he doesn’t believe so and I’m sure he did not plan to go back to the national assembly. That is why he contested for the presidency and lost,” he added.
“This is democracy. The space is free. A certain period of time was given for people to want to contest. Timetables were set, guidelines were produced by the parties, and eventually elections were held,” Machina added.