Political leaders from the North were said to have reached out to President Goodluck Jonathan in a bid to secure assurances that their preferred candidate would be supported to succeed the President in 2019.
In a move seen as a follow up to the pact said to have been reached with the strategy Committee, comprising mainly northern leaders, some elders, led by elder statesman, Alhaji Tanko Yakassai, had visited the Presidential Villa, Abuja last week for further talks.
Though the group met with Vice President Namadi Sambo, sources confirmed that the key message conveyed through the Vice President to Jonathan was the need for assurances that power would revert to the North in 2019.
Sources confirmed that Jonathan had given indications that the North would take power in 2019 after his second term during the week long discussions that yielded the pact produced by the Strategy Committee.
But it was learnt that the elders came specifically last week to get words from the Villa that the North-west would be backed for the Presidency in 2019.
It was learnt that the northern elders had wanted to secure the assurances so as to be in the best position to define their messages to strategic elders and leaders of the North.
“The deal right now is to see how the North would reciprocate years of South-south backing with support for Jonathan, while the President will in turn back a northern candidate to succeed him in 2019. With that pact sealed, we have a concrete message for the North,” a source in the know said.
It was learnt that the team reiterated their message during the meeting with Sambo at the Villa last week and was told to expect words from the President directly through its chairman.
“I can tell you that the President was immediately briefed on his return to Abuja and words have been communicated to Alhaji Yakassai on the way forward,” the source further said.