. Sets Up Fresh Zonal Committees to Relaunch Campaign
. Budgets Multi-Billion Naira ‘Gifts’ for Traditional and Religious Leaders, 
Groups, Students, Academics
. VP Sambo Infiltrates Opposition’s Ranks in Kaduna
President Goodluck Jonathan and his campaign team has launched a massive campaign drive to woo traditional and religious leaders, political groups, women, students, academic, etc in all the six geopolitical groups to support his second term bid in the March 28 presidential election.
The new move, which the president started from the South-West at the weekend, is a device to neutralise the popularity of the All Progressives Congress (APC’s) presidential candidate, retired General Muhammadu Buhari. The six-week window of opportunity created by the insistence of the military to tackle the insurgency in the North-East is being used to drum the president’s achievements into the ears of Nigerians so as to win over their hearts.
Sunday Trust learnt at the weekend that as the campaigns across the country had virtually been accomplished before the elections were rescheduled for another six weeks, the campaign organisation decided to set up the new committees. They would be led by high-powered officials in The Presidency, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and the president’s campaign organisation.
Those slated to lead the teams include Vice President Namadi Sambo, Senate President David Mark, Alhaji Adamu Mu’azu, Chief Tony Anenih, Senator Ahmadu Ali, and prominent leaders in the president’s camp from the six geopolitical zones.
A document available to Sunday Trust revealed that in the North-West the team would target some 21 groups, among them traditional rulers, religious leaders (Christians and Muslims), PDP stakeholders, influential business people, student unions, labour unions, farmers unions and road transport workers.
Others targete included social clubs, professional associations, academics, women and youth organisations, civil servants, security personnel, the media and disgruntled opposition party members.
The document indicated that huge sums of money have been budgeted, mainly as ‘gifts’ to various segments of the society targeted for visit. From the document the following sums of money have been voted for North-West states: Kaduna (N668 million), Kano (N590 million), Katsina (N615 million), Sokoto (N620 million), Kebbi (N610 million), Zamfara (N620 million) and Jigawa (N610 million). The secretariat of the North-West zone has a budget of N349 million, with an additional N20 million for contingency.
A source at The Presidency told our reporter last night that the presidential contact committee to each of the six geopolitical zones have submitted their budgets for the new round of the grand campaign meant to turn the table against the APC.
In a related development, Vice President Mohammed Namadi Sambo has relocated to Kaduna to meet leaders of his Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and some leaders of the opposition parties in a calculated move to canvass for votes ahead of the general elections.
The Vice President was reportedly holdings secret talks with party leaders and candidates across the state possibly to influence their voting behaviour.
A source in Kaduna who will not want his name published said the VP had “held discussions with PDP candidates and ward leaders and he is expected to meet a select group of opposition leaders tomorrow (today) possibly to infiltrate their ranks.”
The source said Sambo who arrived in Kaduna on Friday will spend five days to accomplish his mission.
On arrival on Friday, Sambo met with all PDP candidates in the state and national assembly elections as well as Governor Mukhtar Ramalan Yero who is seeking re-election. “All those in attendance were given financial support to step up campaigns. The VP met with a total of 20 PDP members from each of the 23 local government areas of the state on Saturday. He will meet with the opposition parties tomorrow (today), thereafter he will continue talks with interest groups until Wednesday when he is expected to return to Abuja,” the source disclosed.
The identity of the opposition leaders who will attend the meeting in the State House, Kawo, was not clear but one PDP leader said the move was rather too late “considering the popularity of the opposition APC in the state.”
Sunday Trust


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