The presidential candidate of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu will win the 2023 presidential election, the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) has stated in a new country report.
It stated the chances of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) candidate Atiku Abubakar have been significantly reduced by the internal crisis in the party.
His chances, the report further predicted, have been narrowed by the growing popularity of Peter Obi, the candidate of Labour Party (LP), in the South-East, which is traditionally the powerhouse of the PDP.
Tinubu, a former Lagos Governor, defeated several APC leaders to emerge the party’s presidential candidate in May.
Most of his opponents stepped down for him moments before the commencement of the primary election while other aspirants including Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo went ahead to test their popularity with Tinubu but lost.
His choice of Kashim Shettima, a former Borno Governor of and a fellow Muslim, as his running mate has continued to generate controversy in the APC and across the country ahead of next year’s election.
But the EIU said it does not appear that the same-faith ticket would affect the chances of Tinubu in the presidential election.
“We expect Tinubu to take the presidency, and recent developments have only reinforced our thinking. It does not appear that a Muslim-Muslim ticket will weigh significantly on Tinubu’s electoral chances,” it said.
Like the APC, PDP has been plagued by internal crisis since the presidential primary was concluded.
Rivers Governor Nyesom Wike expressed dissatisfaction with the manner the primary was conducted.
The issue was aggravated when Wike, who was Atiku’s closest opponent in the primary, was snubbed by Atiku as the former vice-president picked Governor Ifeanyi Okowa as his running mate.
The decision was contrary to the recommendation of Wike as running mate by the special PDP selection committee.
Wike has stated his demands for reconciliation, among which is the removal of the national chairman of the party, Iyorchia Ayu.
But Ayu has vowed not to resign his position, insisting that his mandate was for four years.
“Atiku has more cause to worry. Not only is Obi eating into the PDP’s South-eastern support base, but Governor Wike, who finished second in the primary, does not appear to be interested in endorsing him,” the EIU said.
The crisis rocking the PDP took a turn for the worse on Wednesday as Wike’s camp pulled out of the campaign council of Atiku.
The report said with the amendment of the Electoral Act to accommodate electronic transmission of result, the role of the establishment in influencing outcome of the presidential election would diminish significantly, leading to the most fairest and credible polls since the return to democratic rule in 1999.
The report added that despite the presence of three major political gladiators from the three major ethnic groups in the country in the presidential race, the amendment of the Electoral Act would bring less disputes about the presidential election result.