Former Minister of Works and a strong promoter of Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s presidency, Senator Dayo Adeyeye, has pronounced that division in the opposition People’s Democratic Party has caused colossal damage to the chances of its candidate, Atiku Abubakar in the 2023 presidential poll.
Adeyeye, who is the National Chairman of Southwest Agenda for Asiwaju 2023 Presidency(SWAGA), said the rise of Peter Obi and Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso as presidential candidates of the Labor party and New Nigeria People’s Party respectively, had drained Atiku’s votes and limited his winning chances.
On the rumored meeting of Tinubu and Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike in London to consummate an alliance ahead of 2023, Adeyeye was enthused about the move, saying it would additionally brighten the possibilities of the former Lagos State Governor clinching the presidency.
The former Minister who spoke while featuring on a political program on African Independent Television(AIT) and was observed in Ado Ekiti, the Ekiti State capital, expressed positive thinking that Tinubu has a strong political network across Nigeria to defeat Atiku, his closest rival and opponents without going into a run-off as being anticipated.
According to him, “Tinubu has the network and strong political structures to amass 25% of votes in two/third of the 36 states. There won’t be any need for any run-off, because the APC has a strong candidate that can deliver.”
He said the breaking away of strong politicians, who had emerged as presidential candidates in other parties would consequently influence Atiku’s chances in the forthcoming poll.
“You could all remember that the PDP lost in the 2015 presidential poll to President Muhammadu Buhari because five governors defected to the newly formed APC. And if you look at the strength of adding five governors to the then APC, the two parties were near equal strength and that affected the ruling party.
“So in the coming election, the same scenario is playing out. About four months ago, Atiku, Obi, and Kwankwaso belonged to the same party. So, Obi and Kwankwaso, who are now in LP and NNPP will divide the votes that are supposed to be for Atiku in the coming election.
“But if you look at the APC, the party is intact and strong behind Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu. Though some few people had defected and I think that affected all the major parties. If you look at the two main parties, you will realize that APC is the one that is more cohesive, stable, and intact.”
The SWAGA leader said that he was unable to confirm whether Tinubu and Governor Wike are in alliance talk, yet he added that the River State Governor joining the APC candidate would additionally improve Tinubu’s triumph.
“Governor Wike had always insisted that power must rotate between the North and the South for justice and equity. So, if he supports us, it means he wants to be part of the struggle to ensure political balancing between the
North and the South and that will be good for APC.
“What the PDP did by giving the presidency to the North after eight years of the presidency was a betrayal of trust and confidence. If not for Tinubu, the APC could have been in the same mess now. His participation in the primary prevented a Northern aspirant from emerging in APC because of his strength and network”.
Adeyeye said the hysteria created by the same faith ticket adopted by the APC will soon be over, saying the clamor around such arrangement had been extinguished soon after the Plateau State Governor, Simon Lalong emerged the Director General of the Tinubu/Shettima Campaign association.
“The APC has been trying hard to resolve the crisis emanating from Muslim-Muslim ticket. Some of those who felt aggrieved had reflected on their agitations and we are talking. The question has been whether will Atiku’s presidency served their interest more than Tinubu’s or not.
“But let me say that Since Governor Simon Lalong became the DG, things have begun to change. There had been a serious turnaround. The majority of our Christian brothers from the North Central are now working hard for Tinubu/Shettima presidency.
“They are rooting for him because they knew he has risen beyond the fantasy of making promises he could not fulfill. They knew that he is a man who has the experience to practically implement his policies and not those who were just dreaming.”
The former minister dismissed the widespread insinuation that Tinubu is terminally sick to lead a country with diverse challenges like Nigeria, saying he is mentally alert to lead and guarantee good governance.