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Bello: Youth, Diaspora groups root for Kogi governor Governor Yahaya Bello’s presidential ambition started like a joke, when his campaign posters surfaced on the social media late last year.
The posters with the APC logo and colours, have the message: “All Progressives Congress Continual of Good Governance. Vote for Governor Yahaya Bello as President, Federal Republic of Nigeria.” However, like other presidential hopefuls, who are yet to publicly declare their aspirations, Bello quickly distanced himself from the campaign posters.
The governor said he has no prior knowledge of the purported materials, and that he had no links with the group or individuals behind them. The picture, however, became clear, when members of the Kogi State House of Assembly called on the governor to join the 2023 presidential race.
The lawmakers, in a motion on behalf of all the members by the Majority Leader of the House, Hassan Abdullahi, predicated their call on the “sterling performance” of the governor since he assumed office in 2016.
While many thought the Kogi governor’s move was to make himself relevant ahead of the 2023 polls, recent developments in the polity show that he means business.
An indication to this emerged, when Bello dismissed claims that the APC had a zoning arrangement. He was apparently reacting to calls for the ruling party to zone its 2023 presidential ticket to the southern part of the country.
Bello, who maintained that anyone from any zone is free to contest for the party’s presidential ticket for the 2023 elections, said: “There is nothing like zoning in our party. In 2015, there was no zoning; many aspirants, including former Governor Rochas Okorocha contested.
In 2019, there was no zoning; people in APC were not courageous enough to contest with President Muhammadu Buhari.” Asked if he is interested in the 2023 presidency, Bello said: “If it’s the will of God for me to become president in this country at the right time, I will be.”
He added that he will defeat any candidate if he decides to contest for the 2023 presidency by a wide margin. I will record votes that have never been recorded in Nigeria by the grace of God. But that’s not the issue right now; the issue is there must be Nigeria before we talk of 2023,” he said.
Since then, Bello has been warming himself into the hearts of some Nigerians as well as groups. One the groups is Arewa Youth Forum (AYF), which recently called on the Kogi governor to run for the presidency in 2023 because it was time for the youth to take over the country’s leadership. Speaking during a courtesy visit on Bello at the government house, Lokoja, president of the group, Comrade Gambo Gunjungu, said the youth are tired of recycled leaders.
He added that Bello has made remarkable achievements in the areas of security, infrastructure, youth and women inclusion in governance, as well as his firmness against the politicization of the COVID-19 pandemic.
His words: “Like many other young Nigerians wanting to change the narratives of political bandwagon and recycled politicians, we are looking up to Bello as the hope of the Nigerian youth. We are discussing with our patrons and we already have the network it would take to propagate their message all over the nation.”
An international press conference was also held in London, United Kingdom to draw the attention of Nigerians home and abroad to the Bello presidency project. With participants from other countries joining via zoom, speakers eulogised the Kogi State governor for what they called his inclusive governance model, women empowerment and visionary leadership.
Tambuwal: Coalition says it’s time for Sokoto governor
There is no doubt that Sokoto State governor is aiming to take another shot at the presidency after a failed bid in 2019. He has visited some eminent Nigerians, including former President Olusegun Obasanjo, ex-Minister of Defence and Chief of Army Staff, General Theophilus Danjuma (rtd) and a former President of the Senate, David Mark, which many viewed as part of his strategies to test the political waters before launching his 2023 presidential bid.
Besides the visits, there have been posters, showing that Tambuwal is ready for the battle ahead on the platform of the PDP even as scores of groups under the aegis of Tambuwal Save Nigeria, have publicly declared support for him.
The Chief Convener of the coalition, Abdullahi Bakura, who said that the time has come for the Sokoto State governor to lead Nigeria, added that they are not relenting in mobilising Nigerians to support Tambuwal for the 2023 presidency. Tambuwal, Bakura said, holds a promising future for all Nigerians.
He added that the governor has proven his capacity to manage a multicultural diversity in an unbiased manner, citing his track records since his days as speaker of the House of Representatives. Kwankwaso: Kwankwasiyya Movement in charge campaign For Kwankwaso, a two-time governor of Kano State, former senator and ex-Minister of Defence, the arrowhead of his presidential project is the Kwankwasiyya Movement, a political movement he founded, while in office as governor.
The group has relentlessly been using the social media to reach out to the people. It has also been pushing out campaign posters with different messages and in different languages, particularly English and Hausa.
The opposition Peoples Democratic Party, Kano state chapter has enjoined former Kano state governor and erstwhile senator representing Kano central Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso to jostle for presidency in 2023. Also rooting for Kwankwaso is the Kano Sate chapter of the PDP, which maintained that the former governor processes the requisite skills to govern Nigeria.
Wike: Kinsmen rally for support for Rivers governor
Although the Rivers State governor, in January, denied authorising the 2023 presidential campaign posters bearing his name and with the message: “Rescue Nigeria,” sayin that he has not informed anyone that he is interested in the presidency, he recently said in a media interview that nothing will stop him from contesting the 2023 presidential election.
This, perhaps, informed his subsequent endorsement for the nation’s number one position by the South-South Forum of the PDP. The forum, through its chairman, Chief Anthony Ekpelu, not only called on Wike to run for presidency in the 2023 election, but assured him of its support.
The forum said it is backing the Rivers State governor over what it described as his “superlative performance.”
Okupe: Youths drum support for ex-presidential aide For the former presidential media aide, who in March, declared his intention to run for the 2023 presidency, with a promise to be a one-term president and a mission to restructure, reset a new agenda for the nation and reunite the country, he has the endorsement of a youth group, Noble Youths Mass Support Association (NYMSA).
The group’s National Coordinator, Mr Godwin Onmonya, who spoke on why they are rooting for the former National Publicity Secretary of the defunct National Republican Convention (NRC), described him asGod-sent and capable of turning around the country’s fortunes in areas of the economy, youth employment, agricultural innovation and protection of lives and property.
“Okupe will create enabling environment for businesses to thrive, restore respect for the rule of law and job opportunities for the development of the country. He is a thoroughbred grassroots politician, who understands Nigeria and Nigerians’ challenges and can provide acceptable solution to them all,” he said Moghalu: Transporters throw weight behind ex-presidential candidate
The former deputy governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, who was the candidate of the Young Progressives Party (YPP) in the 2019 presidential election, has also declared his intention to vie for the post of Nigeria’s president in 2023, saying that his decision was born out of the need to serve and rescue the country. Though he did not disclose the platform through which he intends to contest the election, he said his decision to contest was informed by the need to salvage the country from impending collapse.
He promised that his administration will prioritise poverty reduction, security, education, while delivering good governance in an agenda he titled “SWAG.” While he canvassed for the support of all segments of the population for his ambition, he seems to have gotten that of members and leaders of the National Commercial Tricycle and Motorcycle Riders Association (NACTMORA), popularly known as “Keke Napep” and “Okada” riders in 18 northern states. Saraki: Katsina youths endorse ex- Senate president For the former President of the Senate, who wants to take another shot at the presidency after losing at the PDP presidential primary for the 2019 election, endorsement is coming from an usual quarter, President Buhari’s home state – Katsina.
Though Saraki, like many others, has not officially declared his intention, the Katsina State Youths Network (KSYN) has urged him to contest for the exalted seat on the platform of the PDP.
The group’s leader, Abubakar Nuhu Adam, said endorsement of Saraki, which was formally done in Daura, the hometown of President Buhari, is a sign of “politics without bitterness.” Nwajiuba: Project Nigeria clamours for Education minister Posters with the image of the Minister of State for Education, aspiring to be president in 2023 and supported by some members of the APC in the North have also surfaced.
The minister, who represented Ehime Mbano/ Ihitte Uboma/Obowo federal constituency in the House of Representatives between 1999 and 2003 before making a comeback in 2019 before his appointment as minister, is however yet to officially announce his ambition.
However, Project Nigeria, a political pressure group, has emerged, to drive Nwajiuba presidential project.
The group is led by Prof. Armay’au Hamisu Bichi, from Kano State, who is the National Coordinator, while a fourth term member of the House of Representatives representing Ukwa Federal Constituency, Hon. Nkem.Abonta, is the South East Coordinator of the group. Nwajiuba, according to the group, “is a global brand making himself available to serve our country Nigeria as number citizen come 2023.”
Amaechi: Buhari’s kinsmen drum support for Transport minister For the Minister of Transportation, his campaign posters have not only surfaced on the internet but the hard copies were at a time pasted on major streets in the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja. Details on the posters show that Amaechi and el-Rufai are vying for the position of president and vice-president respectively.
One of the posters was titled “the People’s choice” while another had the message
“Today may not be the best, but tomorrow will be better” and sponsored by the National Consolidation Movement although none had the logo of any political party. Like others, Amaechi has not declared his intention but he already has the endorsement of a coalition groups based in Katsina State, with the name, Movement of Ameachi for President, 2023 (MARPS).
The group, which said that it was time to start thinking about who will likely succeed Buhari in 2023, believes that ‘Among all the politicians from the South said to have shown interest in the presidential race, Ameachi is the most resourceful and capable.”