•Tip Peter Obi, Akinwumi Adesina, Kingsley Mohgalu
•Saraki, Nigeria’s special purpose vehicle for 2023 polls
By Dapo Akinrefon and Johnbosco Agbakwuru
Indications emerged weekend that former President Olusegun Obasanjo and some retired army generals are in support of a power shift to the South in 2023.
It was also gathered that the former president, Obasanjo and former generals are disposed to having any of President of the African Development Bank, Mr Akinwumi Adesina; former governor of Anambra State, Peter Obi and a former Deputy Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, Professor Kingsley Mohgalu, emerge as President Muhammadu Buhari’s successor.
A close ally of the former president, Obasanjo and some of the generals, who spoke with Vanguard in confidence, however, ruled out the possibility of supporting former Vice President Atiku Abubakar in the 2023 election.
Besides, the source said former National Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, Professor Attahiru Jega, is being favoured to emerge as vice president.
The source said: “He (Obasanjo) supports power shift to the South. The people he has indicated an interest in general and not specifically are Akinwumi Adesina, Peter Obi and Kingsley Moghalu.
”Then in the North, he likes Attahiru Jega (former INEC chairman) to be the running mate. He is not supporting Atiku at all. He supports power-shift.”
Saraki, Nigeria’s special purpose vehicle for 2023 polls
Meanwhile, ahead of the 2023 general elections, The Nigerian Group, TNG, has written to the leadership of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, to adopt the former president of the Senate, Senator Bukola Saraki as its presidential candidate for the election.
The group said that Saraki has what it takes to unite the country and end sectional and tribal agitations.
TNG Director of Advocacy, Gbenga Obisesan, said: “Dear leaders and members of the Peoples Democratic Party, here comes a period when we have to be decisive, deliberate and thorough about salvaging Nigeria with our very best. There is no luxury of time to gamble and resources to waste because the people in the saddle are as undemocratic as autocrats.
“Nigerians have been poorly and badly served; they are hoping and waiting on us to provide the best alternative after eight years in the wilderness of hopelessness with the APC.
“They want to see the potential of our nation become a reality. They saw how a bag of rice has moved from N7,000 under the PDP to N27,000 under the APC.
“But there is a problem; we are torn in between choosing a presidential candidate who can resonate and connect with diverse interests and pandering to some good but narrow political consideration called the North-South divide (zoning).
“As an opposition party, can we afford to be limited by the Nigerian fault lines? After almost 23 years of this democratic journey, the agitation over sectional interest in the form of zoning has not helped in healing our divided country.
Unfortunately, our fault lines have widened even when the North and the South have had a fair chance to lead.
“What we have in summary is agitation for Political Power in the name of politics and zonal interest, which has only benefitted a few across board.
“The overarching goal of democratic government is to bring good governance to the people and, at a minimum, the greater majority.
“We have seen the array of quality of presidential aspirants on parade; they are men of outstanding qualities and significant history. But about 2023, and considering the existential factors, the PDP can only narrow down its choices to one or two persons.
“The party can equally set up an independent study group to assess certain variables and factors that can fit in for national acceptability.
“By our projection and with due respect to all the aspirants on parade, we believe that Dr Bukola Saraki is one eminent individual who ticks the boxes for the PDP in all ramifications.
“He is the bridge between the South and North and young and old. He is a medical doctor who is an economist and a lawmaker at the same time. He is a public-private person in one.”
Credit | Vanguard