Jagaban Borgu was on course to victory this morning after some of the aspirants stepped down for Asiwaju Bola Tinubu and asked their supporters to vote for the All Progressives Congress (APC) national leader. They announced their withdrawal for Tinubu while addressing delegates at the APC presidential primary poll for the last time before the commencement of the election.
They are former Governor of Ogun State and serving senator, Ibikunle Amosun, ex-governor of Akwa Ibom State, Sen. Godswill Akpabio, erstwhile Speaker, House of Representatives, Dimeji Bankole, as well as Jigawa State Governor Abubakar Badaru, his Ekiti counterpart, Dr. Kayode Fayemi and Senator. Robert Ajayi Boroffice. Announcing his stepping down for the former Lagos governor, former Speaker Dimeji Bankole said “because I like to grow old, I hereby withdraw for my elder, Tinubu.”
Barrister Mrs. Uju Ohanenye also stepped down for Tinubu and urged her supporters to vote for him. Some of the 23 aspirants refused to step down or withdraw but went ahead with the election.
They were immediate past Transportation Minister, Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi, former Minister for Science and Technology, Dr. Ogbonnaya, Pastor Tunde Bakare, ex-governor of Zamfara State, Sani Yerima, and erstwhile Imo State helmsman, Owelle Rochas Okorocha.
Amaechi said he was the most experience among the aspirants. Rather than stepping down, he challenged delegates to assess aspirants saying: “assess us by what we have done not by how much we bring here. Ask those who bring money, what is the source of your income.” Bakare said he was stepping up.
Ken Nnamani did not step down as earlier reported. Fayemi in stepping down for Tinubu said: “Our brothers from the Northern Governors Forum of the APC have led by example by proposing to party members that the next candidate of our party and by God’s grace the next president of our country must come from the Southern part of this country and I have come to a difficult but necessary decision and that decision is that we must look for the most appropriate person at this time to do the job.
“I am prepared to sacrifice my ambition to be president of Nigeria.
I am a young man and I still have a lot of time ahead of me and one person I have worked with in the trenches of democratic struggles and in the cause of governing Nigeria side by side, shoulder to shoulder, my mentor, my leader and supporter of mine and great fighter for the unity of Nigeria that I will recommend to all my supporters and my delegates starting with the 48 delegates from Ekiti state alone and others from across the country is that you please accord me the respect to offer the support you are giving me to my elder brother, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu. I am not doing him a favour but doing a duty of care for Nigeria.”
Tinubu’s Speech !!!! OUR ENCOUNTER WITH DESTINY: Here comes a time in a nation with the hopes of the moment. Let not the destiny of this land be stolen because we did not do what was meant for us to do at this critical moment. Remember, we formed this party not simply to wrest power from a wrong and failing PDP. “We formed this party to give the people of this land the progressive good governance they deserve so that they may live as well and as peacefully as any people on the face of this earth.
This corrective journey began with the election of President Muhammadu Buhari. At this convention, we must take the next step toward the proper and necessary direction.
“In 2015, the All Progressives Congress won the election to halt the drift in our nation’s governance, redirect our path, and make clear our national priorities We dedicated this party to the guiding principle that government must be for the benefit or each and every Nigerian before it is for the benefit of any single one of ns, No one is above legal rule or regulation. Likewise one is too low for justice and compassionate governance cover or protect him. “Within this context, the APC under President Muhammadu Buhari has governed with patriotic and disciplined commitment this past seven years.
The Buhari government has championed needed reforms, ranging from an innovative petroleum industry law to measures that are aimed at improving power and electricity generation for all Nigerians. Government has invested heavily in building modern airports and railway network and roads. Every Naira is better managed than in prior administrations. “This greater fiscal probity was achieved despite the vast reduction in national revenue caused by the COVID and recurrent global economic downturns.
The Buhari government has done more with much less than its PDP predecessors did. The successive PDP administrations did next to nothing with the plenty they had. What they did with our nation’s abundance is no secret. But what they did not do was even a greater embarrassment. “They left abandoned infrastructure projects all across the nation. The APC completed them.
They allowed ISWAP/ Boko Haram to erect strongholds. The Buhari government has been compelled to wage great war against these threats because of the decade of neglect by the PDP.
“The PDP should have uprooted this evil when it was but a seed. The APC-led government is now left to contend with the dangerous tree it has become. Yet, as surely as I can state my name, the next APC government shall uproot this evil such that, never again, shall it try to take hold in this land. “While fighting this evil with a purposeful hand, we remain mindful of the socio-economic and political inequalities that often spawn unrest and social instability.
Despite economic difficulties wrought by protracted global recession, the APC-led government has progressed in diversifying the economy, improving food security through intense investment in the agricultural sector. “But the long day for national rebuilding is not over. Even greater, bolder work is needed to beat back the hard challenge swe face. Yet, my hope is high and that is hope not for myself but for you and this nation, My greatest trust and comfort reside in the innate goodness of the people of our beloved nation, Joiner in common purpose, with leadership informed by wise and correct policies, the things that we can accomplish are nothing less than historic. “We can change the very face of the nation.
Though this season of primaries has been abbreviated, I have talked to thousands of people across this land. Yes, there were crowds and jubilant receptions offered me. These were nice things, but they are not the most important factors to the task at hand. People approached me wanting to know if I had a plan to continue the fight against terror and violence.
“They wanted to know if I cared about agriculture and the plight of the ordinary farmer. Youths asked me about jobs and their future in this world. The poor asked how and when they will be assured that they can daily place food on the table for their innocent children.
“They did not ask for mage or for me to give them charming yet empty responses. Our people asked honest, serious questions and I gave then honest and serious answers I told them what we can achieve through hard work and dedication to a higher national purpose.
“I told them we must work harder than ever; but I also assured them that the average person shall not feel left behind, Building on the reforms of the past seven years and on the progressive ideals of our party, the coming APCled government, under my watch, shall place the welfare of the average Nigerian above that of any elite or special interest. Our progressive government must be for the people and never for the powerful.
“The powerful already have. Let us give succour and an open door to the less privileged. Let us bring forth a society built on shared prosperity, belief in justice, compassion for others and an unshakable commitment to a form of governance that treats all citizens with equal respect and due regard. Let us not just open the door to the promise of a better society. Let us brick by brick and stone by stone build a new society that begets a greater nation. “Weighty matters now rest in the balance.
A fateful decision awaits you the delegates to this convention. Choose that which most wholly benefits the nation. Think big at this moment that we may accomplish great things in the next APC administration that will come on 29 May 2023. “My experience in office and the knowledge gained through hard work, tough trials and patient undertaking have prepared men for this hour.
I am a man of purpose with a serious mission. My vow is to use all that I know and all of my abilities to the benefit of the nation and its people. I do not step forward because I think this nomination is my due. I step forward because I can help lead our nation to become what it ought to be. “I do not say this as a boast. Hear me out. I claim not to be special nor great.
My training, experiences, acquired knowledge are what is special and uniquely suited for this moment. I am merely a conduit, a servant of a cause much larger than myself. “Now is a time for progressive vision and singular purpose. There is a general agreement that 2023 will be an encounter with destiny, when our nation shall need a certain type of leader to realise a better Nigeria.
“We need to build a Nigeria where sufficient jobs for the urban population are available and lead to a good life most wholly benefits the nation. Think big at this moment that we may accomplish great things in the next APC administration that will come on 29 May 2023. “My experience in office and the knowledge gained through hard work, tough trials and patient undertaking have prepared me for this hour.
I am a man of purpose with a serious mission. My vow is to use all that I know and all of my abilities to the benefit of the nation and its people. I do not step forward because I think this nomination is my due. I step forward because I can help lead our nation to become what it ought to be.
“I do not say this as a boast. Hear me out. I claim not to be special or great. My training, experiences, acquired knowledge are what is special and uniquely suited for this moment. I am merely a conduit, a servant of a cause much larger than myself. Now is a time for progressive vision and singular purpose.
There is a general agreement that 2023 will be an encounter with destiny, when our nation shall need a certain type of leader to realise a better Nigeria. “We need to build a Nigeria where sufficient jobs for the urban population are available and lead to a good life.
“We need to encourage and support our farmers so that they can car enough to maintain their families, while feeding a growing nation We must continuously invest in the modernisation and expansion of infrastructure, including power, to enhance the quality of life of our people.
Additionally, we must continue to empower the states so that grassroots economic and political development is maximised. “Though our tribe and tongue may differ, we must build a united country , premised on equity, fairness and justice. True reform and progress lie not in copying others but in identifying our own opportunities. I have done this in Lagos.
I humbly ask you to allow me to use these skills and experiences to advance the nation. “I come to you with a coherent vision on how to improve our nation such that our schools, industry, agriculture and infrastructure will become the pride of all. Ours shall be a land where all Nigerians will have an equal chance and no one is excluded because of his ethnic background, religious creed, place of origin or social station.
We are all Nigerians. “By this statement, Iseek your help and support to become our party’s nominee and standard bearer in the coming February 2023 elections. To lead Nigerians is a sacred trust, which I do not take lightly or seek selfishly. By giving me the party’s mandate, I hereby makey solemn vow to make Nigeria the best home for its citizens. “As an indivisible, united country, we shall overcome the destructive forces attempting to steal our destiny. May the triumph of our democratic journey be complete and serve as an exemplar to Africa, our race, and the rest of mankind. We were born for this moment. Let us now make the most of it.
I thank you all for listening. May God bless you all. May God Bless our party, the APC. May God bless our beloved nation, the Federal Republic of Nigeria. Three aspirants step down for Osinbajo – campaign DG Former Senate President, Ken Nnamani and two other presidential aspirants have stepped down for Vice President Yemi Osinbajo. APC chieftain and Chairman, Senate Committee on Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Kabiru Gaya, disclosed this while briefing CHANNELS TELEVISION on Tuesday in Abuja.
Although he didn’t mention who the other aspirants are, there are speculations that they are ex-Ogun State governor, Ibikunle Amosun, and a Deputy Majority Leader of the Senate, Ajayi Boroffice. Disclosing that the ruling party has decided to zone the presidential slot to the South-West region, he remarked: “We have Vice President Yemi Osinbajo and Bola Tinubu; it comes down to the South-West.
I’m aware that a few aspirants have stepped down for Vice President Yemi Osinbajo. They are Ken Nnamani and two others. I think that will be announced later. “Whatever the number the party decides; it is up for because the people need to come and address the party members and tell them if they are stepping down, why are they stepping down, and for who. If they are not stepping down, let them tell Nigerians what they intend to do to improve the situation in the governance of Nigeria.”
According to Gaya, the APC took its decision to give its presidential ticket to the southern region in the spirit of equity and justice. He believes that the ruling party has sent a signal to Nigerians that it is not a regional or sectional association but one that is meant for all the masses. “In principle, we have President Buhari from northern Nigeria that is serving seven years going to eight years; I think naturally, the power should shift to the south. That is what we have been talking about for over two years.
I believe that Nigerians will believe that APC is the party for all. It is not a sectional or regional party. “In any decision you take, it has merits and demerits. When the merits are more, then you say ‘we’, that is the majority. So, the majority of Nigerians accept that let the leadership of the presidency of APC or Nigeria go to the south and we all agreed to that,” the lawmaker added. Why I withdrew, by Nnamani Earlier, Nnamani gave reasons for initially withdrawing from the presidential primary poll.
He, however, wished that a Southeast aspirant emerged as the party’s candidate Nnamani was bitter that the party jettisoned the zoning arrangement and monetisation of the entire primary process.
Addressing journalists in Abuja, Nnamani said: “the fact that leading northerners failed to indicate interest in the race convinced many of us that our party will thread the path of honour and justice by zoning its presidency to the south after a northern president has completed eight years.
“But the events of recent days created the impression that zoning had been jettisoned in the APC. “The vacillation of party leaders regarding zoning of the APC presidential ticket has not created clarity in the party and injures the confidence and faith of many in the south, particularly the southeast, in the party.
“It has the implication of suggesting to many in the party, including myself, that the party will allow conveniences of the moment to override foundational issues of justice and fairness.” He also faulted the process that led to the primary election. He bemoaned the confusion and uncertainty that beclouded the primary race.
This, he said, frustrated effective campaign and made the primary a game for those with deep pocket. “In the present circumstances, it does not make any sense for me to continue in the race, as I have not had the opportunity to market my profile and ideas to the delegates of our party in a manner that allow for deliberation and introspection.
“Therefore, I discontinue my aspiration and wish the party successful primary and unity of purpose so that we can win the 2023 general elections. “I will continue to engage with the party and its leadership to make sure that the ideas and values that I cherish and propagate find strong footing in the party administration and in public leadership after election.
“No matter the outcome of the primary, I pray that our party does justice to the southeast that ought to present the next presidential candidate of our party,” Nnamani added.
If we are fair, a Southeasterner should succeed Buhari, former Abia Governor, Ogbonnaya Onu told the delegates. Buhari asked delegates to vote in a candidate with the best chance of bictory. Don’t allow PDP to drag us back, Buhari pleaded with the delegates I didn’t come this far to chicken out, Kogi State Governor Yahaya Bello said.
You can’t wish this country well and vote for someone you don’t believe in-Osinbajo Delegates at the Eagles Square, Abuja were ecstatic as Vice President Yemi Osinbajo moved to address them. He said he felt honoured to share the platform with 22 other Nigerians at the convention.
According to him, it is possible to have a firstclass health care system, education, mining, and exploit oil and gas in the southeast and some northern states. “You can’t wish this country well and vote for someone you don’t believe in. Your vote carries the answer to the prayer prayed for the future of our country and the future of our children,” he said.
Consensus fails Youthful Nicholas Felix stepped down for Osinbajo while the only woman aspirant, Barrister Uju Benedict Ohanenye stepped down for Tinubu to round off exciting addresses to the delegates by the aspirants. Only Emeka Nwajiuba was not at the convention venue and therefore could not step up to address the delegates as did the 22 others that encapsulated their respective agenda for Nigeria.
With the speeches over, the stage was set for the elective convention by the accredited 2203 voting delegates. Meanwhile, a number of the aspirants were exceptionally brilliant and oratorical in their speeches. Osinbajo, Bakare, Senator Okorocha, and Fayemi, among others, were brilliant.
Former Senate President Ken Nnamani withdrew from the race without attending down for anyone. Nicholas Felix stepped down for Osinbajo. Of all the seven that stepped down for Tinubu, only three of them control delegates from their states, namely: Gov Fayemi, Gov Badaru and Senator Akpabio.
This left thirty three states and Abuja still open for aspirants to hunt for delegates’ votes. Buhari urged any of the aspirants that won the ticket to be magnanimous in victory.
An observer remarked: “Emeka Nwajiuba, the first person to buy the N100M Presidential Normination form left the convention venue without presenting himself and his programme to the Delegates.
Those who deceived him into rushing into the Presidential race as the longest known Igbo friend and therefore closest person to Buhari, have abandoned him to his fate. “nstead of him to go and mount the podium and make speeches along the lines of what Ken Nnamani and Ogbonnaya Onu have already said. He apparently abandoned the convention and ran away.
“Like other Igbo paper weight aspirants, Umahi, Okorocha etc at the convention, he could not openly step down for other popular Igbo aspirants as the Yoruba were doing and take the applause. “Very, very sad and unfortunate.” Nine aspirants stepped down while the remaining 14 contested namely: Osinbajo, Tinubu, Amaechi, Lawan, Nwajiuba, Umahi, Bakare, Onu, Yerima, Okorocha, Bello, Jack-Rich, Ayade and Mokelu.