APC campaign list, end of the road for Osinbajo?* by Peter Ojelabi

It is no news that the All Progressives Congress, APC, 2023 presidential campaign list is out. But the exclusion of the incumbent Vice-president of Nigeria, Prof Yemi Osinbajo, has left many tongues wagging on what has happened to the relationship between Bola Tinubu and Osinbanjo.

Osinbanjo, who served as the commissioner for justice under Tinubu as Lagos state governor between 1999 and 2007 and also nominated by the latter to be the running mate to President Muhammad’s Buhari in 2015, contested against his former boss at APC presidential primary election. A situation that maked Tinubu’s loyalists mostly Yoruba to tag him a ‘traitor’ and link him to Akintola of the then western region.

Since then, the relationship between duo has been frosty, which they denied countless time. Tinubu visited Osinbajo at the Presidential Villa after his victory at the primary to foster the relationship among the contestants in the party.

Osinbajo who has so far kept quiet over Tinubu’s running mate is believed to be stylishly distancing himself from APC same faith ticket. An APC source revealed that Osinbajo was contacted before the campaign list was compiled but refused to give his positive response, though not working against the interest of the party and the Yoruba at large but he is said not to be happy with same faith ticket.

But a press release by APC campaign spokesman, Festus Keyamo, suggested otherwise. In a lengthy statement, Keyamo said Osinbajo’s name was withhold on the president directive, that all the stakeholders of his government cannot concentrate on campaign while leaving the administrative work undone.

However, Osinbajo and Tinubu have not made any public appearance together after the party primary, which makes some to question their intimacy and predicted a cold war between the duo. But APC presidential campaign list has justified the claim as Osinbajo and other party chieftains did not make the list of the council.

With the list, the questions are: is that the end of the road for the political ambition of Osinbajo? What will be his fate after 2023 general elections if Tinubu is elected, especially now that he is regarded by party loyalists who are even his kinsmen as ‘Squishing’

Former speaker of House of Representatives, Hon. Yakubu Dogara, also failed to make the list. The positions given to former governor of Rivers state, Rotimi Amechi, Senate President Ahmed Lawal and former governor of Osun state Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola also generated controversies.

Peter Ojelabi,
Ogbomoso, Oyo state

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