President Goodluck Jonathan will soon declare his intention to run in the 2015 presidential election, the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Senator Pius Anyim, has said.
Anyim made this known on Saturday at the Liberation Stadium, Port Harcourt, Rivers State, during the South-South rally for the President.
The rally was organised by the Transformation Ambassadors of Nigeria.
As early as 7am on Saturday, Port Harcourt and neighbouring local governments in the state experienced unusual traffic jam. Policemen and other security forces were seen on major roads in Port Harcourt, the state capital.
The East West Road, the major gateway to other parts of the country was so busy as supporters of the President were seen in buses and security vehicles.
At the Liberation Stadium venue in Elekahia, Port Harcourt, the leader of TAN, Kenneth Kobani, presented 4.15 million signatures to President Jonathan.
He urged the President to contest the 2015 presidential election, saying he deserved a second term because of his unprecedented achievements in the country.
Continuing, Anyim said, “The South South has broken the record of the other five regions that have so far asked President Jonathan to run for a second term of four years.
“Your region has collected 4,150,000 signatures. The signatures can be verified. You can see the names of those who signed; their telephone numbers and local governments. This process is real.
“Before I make any further comment I want to dance to the President Goodluck Jonathan music: Goodluck for me; Goodluck for everybody. These figures are fantastic: Rivers State, 1,100,000; Akwa Ibom, 800,000; Bayelsa State, 500,000; Cross Rivers State, 520,000; Edo State, 420,000 and Delta State, 750,000.
“We are truly grateful. For me, something significant has happened in the South South. You have shown that you are solidly, solidly and solidly behind President Jonathan. The South South has beaten our record in the South East, but I can assure you that if I go back to collect more signatures, the number will increase.”
The SSG assured the zone that Jonathan would soon declare his ambition.
Anyim said the President appreciated all they had done by collecting those signatures, adding that the President is a listening one.
“He truly understands your feelings and very soon you will hear from him,” he said.
Also, the Minister of Finance and the Coordinating Minister of the Economy, Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iwaela, stated that President Jonathan had shepherded Nigeria into becoming the largest economy in Africa.
She said Jonathan had created three million jobs, managed Nigeria into becoming the fastest growing economy in Africa and as such deserved commendation and the support of Nigerians to inspire him to do more.
Meanwhile, the Presidency has begun a nationwide recruitment and screening of campaign groups, including non-governmental organisations and civil societies, rooting for President Goodluck Jonathan to contest for the 2015 presidential election.
At least 600 campaign teams in the North-East have signified their interest to work for President Jonathan after being screened and evaluated.
About two weeks ago, President Jonathan, through his Special Adviser on Political Affairs, Prof. Rufai Alkali, announced that there would be a five-day “screening and evaluation of support groups and NGOs”.
In the announcement placed in some newspapers, Alkali said, “This is to inform all leaders and members of all non-governmental organisations and all the support groups rooting for President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan, for 2015, that there shall be a screening and evaluation exercise for the groups in the six geo-political zones.
According to the North-East Chairman of the Screening and Evaluation Committee, Saidu Tafida, who spoke 600 groups were registered in the region, with many associations and civil societies left out.