An analysis by The Africa Report suggests Nigeria’s 2023 presidential race, especially in the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), will be down to the trio of Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, Pastor Tunde Bakare and APC national leader, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu. According to the analysis, Tinubu is already picking up endorsements from Nigerians in the corridors of power who wants a bite of the proverbial national cake.
The report also mentioned the recent tactic endorsement of celebrity journalist and columnist, Dele Momodu, who seem to have bought into the Tinubu presidential project. Last month, a campaign office purportedly for the 2023 presidential ambition of Tinubu was opened in Osun state.
The campaign office had pictures of Tinubu as well as his name written all over the place with a massive banner with the inscription: ‘Tinubu 2023 Non-Negotiable.’
Recently, Pastor Bakare threw a brickbat at Tinubu, complaining about the gargantuan levels of corruption since he was governor of Lagos state and installed his protégés. Bakare is said to see himself as a rival to Tinubu.
In a 2015 interview, the fiery preacher said he had been pressured in the run-up to the elections in 2011, by unnamed politicians, to sign a dated resignation letter. The deal was designed to make Bakare go quietly should that prove necessary for Buhari’s handlers.
Osinbajo is also believed to be the victim of a concerted effort to reduce his goodwill and sellability ahead of 2023. “Some whisper that Osinbajo’s erstwhile political benefactor Tinubu is at the centre of that campaign,” the report noted. Osinbajo himself told the press at the latter’s birthday colloquium earlier this year that Tinubu’s political trajectory has just begun.
“The vice-president, Osinbajo, will have the last laugh – they think I’m stupid – except he has violated his oath,” Pastor Bakare said while speaking of the vice president’s political ordeal recently. “The dynamics among the Lagos trio – Osinbajo, Tinubu and Bakare – point to a deal to pass the presidency on to the south-west after Buhari leaves.
“That may cause resentment in the south-south and south-east geopolitical zones which have produced one president each – and are less favoured than the other geopolitical zones.