By State House Communication Unit
Since the outcome of the APC national delegates conference in Makeni which selected Dr Samura M.W. Kamara and Hon. Chernoh R.M Bah as presidential candidate and running mate respectively, President Ernest Bai Koroma as Chairman and Leader of the APC has been receiving congratulatory messages for a successful process.
On Sunday 29 October, the president hosted at his Femi-Turner Drive residence the former President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, General (Rtd.) Olusegun Obasanjo for a working lunch.
President Obasanjo congratulated President Koroma on the successful selection of the APC presidential candidate and his running mate.
President Koroma went on to present Dr Samura Matthew Wilson Kamara as the party’s presidential candidate as well as Hon. Chernoh Ramadan Maju Bah as the running mate at next year’s ballot.
The president also introduced former aspirants Alhaji Minkailu Mansaray, John Bornor Sisay, Attorney General and Minister of Justice Joseph Fitzgerald Kamara and Ambassador Alimamy P. Koroma to President Obasanjo.
It could be recalled that in 2007, Obasanjo endorsed the SLPP presidential candidate Solomon Berewa, even though the former was still president of Nigeria. In 2012, Obasanjo openly campaigned for President Koroma’s re-election bid, saying that former President Ahmad Tejan Kabbah “laid some foundations and President Koroma has built a worthwhile edifice on that foundation”.
Pundits have opined that Obasanjo’s visit was not only timely following on the heels of the APC convention and the outpouring of support and emotions for the good work of President Koroma during the paddle street carnival, but also a pointer to the mood of the West African region considering the fact that Obasanjo is being regarded as a political heavyweight in West Africa. Some say this visit could be likened to an endorsement of the candidature of Dr Samura Kamara as heir apparent to the presidency.