ANALYSIS: 7 top politicians Tinubu needs to win 2023 presidential election4 min read
Battle for the presidential ticket of the All Progressive Congress (APC) has been won and lost, with former Lagos State governor, Bola Ahmed Tinubu, emerging as the presidential candidate of the party.
Tinubu won the party’s presidential primary in a landslide to clinch the party’s ticket ahead of the 2023 general election.
The presidential primary of the governing party was an open contest that was keenly contested, after the bid by the party to produce its presidential flag-bearer through a consensus failed woefully.
Political analysts are of the opinion that Tinubu must work hard to defeat the candidate of the People’s Democratic Party, PDP, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar to emerge as the next president of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
Outside the PDP, Labour Party’s presidential candidate, Mr. Peter Obi is another candidate in the presidential race enjoying enormous support from Nigerian youths.
For Tinubu to emerge victorious, he needs the full support of these six politicians including President Muhammadu Buhari and the 13 Governors that supported him during the Presidential primaries.
1. President Muhammadu Buhari
Obviously, Tinubu was not the choice of President Muhammadu Buhari according to multiple sources within the presidency.
The National Chairman of APC had announced Ahmad Lawan as the consensus candidate of the party suggesting he (Lawan) was President Muhammadu Buhari’s choice. The choice of Lawan was resisted by the 13 APC Northern Governors paving way for the emergence of Tinubu.
Tinubu is expected to reconcile with Buhari to get his support and genuinely plead with the President to nominate his running mate in other to get his support. On Monday when Tinubu visited Buhari before jetting out to France , Buhari has asked Tinubu to pick whomever he wants as his running mate . This Buhari’s stand portends a great danger for Tinubu as it signals the continuation of a Cold War with the President and Tinubu. If Tinubu must win , he must do everything possible to make sure that Buhari recommends a vice presidential candidate for him . Buhari’s choice is most likely the Senate President, Ahmad Lawan
2. Alhaji Kashim Shettima
Tinubu’s campaign under Shettima proved one fact that this country is abound with abundant progressive human resources.
Former governor Shettima is the new discovery of “unknown” sagacity. This dogged enigma would stand his ground to defend the Tinubu even when the majority were against his position. He remained steadfast and insistent on the course of integrity. Ofcourse, Governor SHETTIMA was a popular governor in Borno State, he has become more popular as a result of his eloquence and steadfastness on the path of the truth. He might not have been a delegate in this last primary election, we can conveniently say that he was a significant part of the success of Asiwaju’s emergence. The interview he granted when he appeared on Channels TV program will remain a documented evidence that turned the tide even when others were hiding behind one finger. With Shettima, Tinubu has a dependable ally.
3. Senator Orji Uzor Kalu
The Chief Whip of the Senate is believed to be a combative and outspoken politician with heavy media and war chest. His influence almost snatched the party’s ticket from Tinubu following his support to the president of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan.
Kalu’s large network both national and international rates him high among the most influential politicians across the country and beyond . His popularity gave the APC the highest votes in the South East from his Abia North senatorial district in the 2019 presidential election. APC also won House of Representatives seats in his zone. He is the only Nigerian who does not stand on the fence . He has the courage to stand firm on his conviction. Despite being an old friend and ally of Tinubu, Tinubu still need to make sure they work together so as to be able to win massively
4. Aliyu Wammako
Wammako is believed to be a heavyweight especially among the Northern caucus of the party. He is the leader of the party in the Caliphate.
Tinubu may need him to checkmate the popularity of the party in Sokoto State as well as to checkmate the activities of Governor Aminu Waziri Tambuwal.
5. Nyesom Wike
Governor Wike who is currently holidaying in Turkey is an influential politician and backbone of opposition People’s Democratic Party.
He recently failed in his bid to emerge as the candidate of the party losing to former Vice President Atiku Abubakar in a keenly contested presidential primary election.
Wike is said not to be happy after Atiku snubbed him to pick Governor Ifeanyi Okowo as his running mate despite emerging as the choice of the committee saddled with picking Atiku’s running mate.
Tinubu may become the biggest beneficiary of Wike’s anger in the 2023 presidential election.
6. Senator Ibikunle Amosun
SIA as fondly called is a dogged politician from Ogun state.
The former governor and serving Senator is an ally of President Muhammadu Buhari. He has a formidable political structure and Tinubu would need him to solidify his base in the South West.
7. Senator Danjuma Goje
Goje is formidable politician from the North-East geo-political zone. Political analysts are projecting Atiku to win the zone.
Tinubu might need the services of political veterans like Goje and others to checkmate Atiku in the North East zone.