There are strong indications that the Peoples Democratic Party presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar, on Saturday met with some members of the international community in Zurich, Switzerland as part of moves to pick the President of the World Trade Organisation.

But Atiku’s spokesman, Paul Ibe, when contacted, said, “There is nothing like that; he has stepped up his consultations to search for a candidate that will be acceptable and complement him.”

Also, a top member of the party, said, “Candidates are being shortlisted and it is not an easy thing at all, possibly more difficult than winning the ticket because the truth of the matter is that all eyes are on who will be the candidate.”

“By now, he has a shortlist that he is working on with the party leadership. The announcement will be on Tuesday.

A member of the PDP NEC, and former governor of Sokoto State, Attahiru Bafarawa, in an interview with The PUNCH, said, “The vice-presidential slot is automatically in the South. Already, a committee of people who will work and decide on it has been appointed. The committee will decide. He (Atiku) has thrown it open in conjunction with PDP governors and BoT members to contact the party.”

An analyst and Executive Director of Women Advocates Research and Documentation Centre and Co-Convener of Womanifesto, a coalition of over 500 women groups, Dr Abiola Akiyode-Afolabi, in an interview with The PUNCH, said the APC and the PDP were interested in ethnicity and religion in picking running mates not gender.

A Professor of Linguistics, University of Ibadan, Francis Egbokhare, told The PUNCH, said Muslim-Muslim ticket was risky because Nigeria’s diversity had been mismanaged unlike when the late Moshood Abiola won the 1993 presidential poll.

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