The chairman of the Northern Elders Council, Alhaji Tanko Yakasai, has said that the programmes put forward by President Muhammadu Buhari and former Vice President Atiku Abubakar would determine which of them the group would support in 2019.

The Punch reports that the NEC chairman said it is premature to endorse any presidential candidate without knowing his or her manifesto.

Yakasai said: “In my opinion, this is not the appropriate time to start making decisions about where the votes will go. Neither of the two candidates has published a clear-cut manifesto or programmes. I am advising that people wait for the programmes put forward by the candidates before we make our final choice.

“I was not even in Nigeria when the conventions of the parties took place. By the provision of the constitution of Nigeria, no organisation, other than a political party, is allowed legally to solicit for votes for any candidate.

“Those who are doing it are doing it against the law. The Peoples Democratic Party did their convention with 13 aspirants and one emerged. The APC did theirs also. It is a matter for Nigerians to make up their minds to decide whom they will vote for.”