Presidential aspirants on the platform of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) yesterday resolved to work together and affirmed the right of any member to aspire to become the president of the country.
The aspirants, who met with leaders of the party at the Lagos House, Marina, were the Vice President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo; former Lagos State governor, Bola Ahmed Tinubu and the Ekiti State Governor Kayode Fayemi.
Also at the meeting, apart from the aspirants, were the former governor of Lagos State and Minister of Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola; Speaker of the House of Representatives, Mr. Femi Gbajabiamila; Chief Niyi Adebayo, Governors Rotimi Akeredolu of Ondo State, Dapo Abiodun of Ogun State and Gboyega Oyetola of Osun State.
Others were former Osun State Governor and Minister of Interior, Rauf Aregbesola and the APC National Secretary, Otunba Iyiola Omisore.
Speaking after the closed-door meeting that lasted over two hours, the pioneer Interim National Chairman of the party, Chief Bisi Akande, said the South West was united and resolved to produce the next president of the country in 2023.
Akande said: “The stakeholders had a fruitful, mutual deliberation. We are united as we will ensure that presidency of the Federal Republic of Nigeria will come to South. We also resolved that everybody should maintain absolute decorum. Thank you, no questions.”
It was gathered that the meeting also resolved that name calling and other personal attacks should no longer be encouraged by aspirants and their supporters.
According to an inside source, “the issue of betrayal was put to rest as the elders affirmed that everyone who desires to run for any political office whatsoever is not encumbered in any way at all.”
They enjoined all aspirants to exhibit the ‘Omoluabi’ ethos in their politicking by shunning divisive rhetoric. While stating that consultations with them would be a continuous exercise, the meeting admonished the aspirants to queue behind whoever amongst them that eventually emerges as the party’s candidate, stating that the cohesion of the South West must be sacrosanct.
Aspirants not present at the meeting include Pastor Tunde Bakare and former Speaker House of Representatives, Dimeji Bankole.