Muhammadu Buhari, a former military head of state, has emerged as the flagbearer of the All Progressives Congress (APC) for the 2015 election.
Buhari polled 3,430 votes to defeat Rabiu Kwankwaso who had 974 votes.
The result means he has a fourth opportunity to contest the highest office in the land.
Buhari’s emergence as APC’s presidential candidate is the most challenging for him since 2003 when he first showed interest in the presidential race.
In 2003 when he ran on the platform of the then All Peoples Party (APP), other aspirants stepped down for him.
It was the same in 2007 when he was flagbearer of the All Nigeria’s People Party (ANPP).
In 2011, Buhari ran as the sole candidate of the Congress for Progressive Change (CPC) and said that would be his swan song.
When he indicated interest in the 2015 election, many perceived Buhari, who had established a strong reputation over the years, as living below expectation.
But he defended his position, saying he came under pressure to contest again.
“The moment I made this statement, in my party and among those who support me, hell was technically let loose,” he told TheCable during an exclusive interview.
“And I think I wrote a letter where I mentioned some people who told me I cannot do that. Luckily for me or the system, I did not say I was abandoning partisan politics. What I said was that I would not present myself for elective office, but people told me I could not do that because to some people I no longer belong to myself, I belong to them.
“People really, including technocrats that were out or still in government, came to me and said if you say you are remaining in partisan politics, then you have to present yourself. It is now up to those who are backing you to come out and support you.”
He has had to fight hard to clinch the party’s ticket after all attempts to reach an agreement with other aspirants to present him as consensus candidate failed.
The other aspirants are Rabiu Kwankwaso, governor of Kano state; Rochas Okorocha, governor of Imo state; Atiku Abubakar, former vice-president and Sam Nda-Isaiah, publisher of Leadership newspaper.