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Tinubu, Before Tijanniya Islamic Leaders, Acknowledges Peter Obi As Major Contender For 2023 Presidency, Dismiss Kwankwaso, Others

For the first time, Bola Ahmed Tinubu, the Presidential candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) has acknowledged Peter Obi as a major contender for the the 2023 Presidency race, narrowing it to three-horse race.

A total of 18 parties fielded Presidential candidates in the 2023 elections but Tinubu, the candidate of the ruling party believes he has just two persons to contend with in February 2023 election – Atiku Abubakar and Peter Obi.

Although he did not specifically mention their names, it was very clear he was referring to them as the APC Vice Presidential candidate, Kashim Shettima, gave context to Tinubu’s comment at an interactive session with leaders of the Tijanniya Islamic sect in Kano on Sunday.

“Peter Obi calls Lagos home not Ekwulobia or Awka, because Asiwaju has provided the template that made Lagos the most peaceful … Lagos state now has the 5th largest economy in Africa,” Shettima said on the Labour Party candidate.

On Atiku, he said, “he (Tinubu will not divide 50% of his time in Dubai and 50% in Nigeria.”

The APC presidential candidate further made allusion to Atiku’s often visit and stay in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, telling the clerics that unlike the PDP candidate, he would be promising total dedication.

Tinubu described Atiku as a “divider,” making reference to the PDP candidate’s comment at the interactive session with a group of northern political leaders under the Arewa Joint Committee at Arewa House, Kaduna.

Atiku had while answering a question on why Northerners should vote for him replied that “what the average Northerner needs is somebody who’s from the North and also understands that part of the country and has been able to build bridges across the country.

“This is what the Northerner needs, it doesn’t need a Yoruba or Igbo candidate, I stand before you as a pan-Nigerian of Northern origin.”

Atiku’s political mantra in the current election period has been that he is the “unifier.”

But his statement at the Kaduna event had generated several controversies with even the organizers of the event having to disassociate themselves from the comment and Rivers State Governor Nyesom Wike calling on Atiku to apologize for the “gaffe.”

In his interaction with the Islamic sect leaders, Tinubu said: “Between all of us running (sic), we are three now left. Isn’t it? One just failed the most important part of the examination. Are you a unifier or a divider? He said ‘I am from the North’. You are a divider!”

The APC candidate also claimed that PDP had spent $16billion on electricity in its 16 years rule but failed to address the situation of epileptic power supply.

“I am reminding you that you don’t need a party who has served 16 years and forget that electricity is the only driver of industrialization and wealth of every nation.

“They spent $16bn and we are still paying for estimated metre and billing. No more!

“I promise to give you 100 not 50, even Dubai they are talking about has only 50. So you will have it better from me than in Dubai,” he added.

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