Tanko Yakasai, an Elder Statesman and Political Adviser in the Second Republic, has said that the ruling All Progressives Congress, APC, might field Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo, or Bola Tinubu, the National Leader of the APC, for the 2023 Presidency.
Speaking with The Interview Magazine, Yakasai said that the South-West region played a key role in the emergence of President Muhammadu Buhari in 2019.
On the possibility of the APC fielding a Presidential Candidate from the South-East, in 2023, Yakasai stated that the region will be sidelined for the South-West.
“The current calculation is that the Vice President is from the South-West. Clearly, there is an unwritten understanding that when Buhari finishes, the Vice President will likely be the next Presidential Candidate of the APC”, he said.
“The Vice President is a Yoruba man. Even if it is not Osinbajo, somebody from there, probably Tinubu, will likely emerge as the Candidate of the party.
“And with the performance of the party in the South-East, I do not see any possibility that the party will think of giving its Candidacy to the South-East, as against the support it earned from the South-West.
“Apart from voting, do not forget that there were some material support which APC enjoyed from the South-West.”
Defending his choice of Atiku Abubakar of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, in the elections, the Elder Statesman revealed that he supported Atiku, because of his experience in governance and business.
Yakasai was asked: “You supported former Vice President, Atiku Abubakar, and the PDP, at the just concluded election. Do you believe the eventual winner, Muhammadu Buhari, won fair and square?”
He replied: “No, I do not. Quite alright, I supported Atiku, because I do not believe that Buhari has the capacity and the competence to handle the Nigerian problem.”
On the issue of the Leadership of the 9th Senate, Yakasai pointed out that it would not favour the APC, to insist on Ahmed Lawan.
Lawan, the Senate Majority Leader, has been given the blessings of the APC, to succeed Bukola Saraki, as the Leader of the Red Chamber.
Yakasai said that he expected the ruling party to have learnt from its past mistakes.
He argued that the Lawmakers should be allowed to choose who will lead them, and not a person imposed on them.
“Well, they have been touting this idea for a long time. Remember when the current Senate was convened after the 2015 election, they wanted Ahmad Lawan to be the Senate President”, he said.
“It was the rupture in the party that led a chunk of party Senators to team up with PDP Senators, to get Bukola Saraki and Ike Ekweremadu, as President and Deputy President of the Senate.
“What I am surprised about; I thought what happened to them in the last dispensation would have been a lesson for them to allow Legislators to decide who should be their Leaders.
“I worked with National Assembly for four years. I know the mindset of members of the National Assembly. They believe that they have their own mandate, separate from the mandate of the President.”