As the race for the office of the president ahead of the 2023 general elections, a fresh set of spanners seem to have been thrown into the wheels of Atiku’s presidential bid. So much so that the former Vice-President’s political ambition might never recover from this setback.
According to a report by LEGIT, ex-president Olusegun Aremu Obasanjo, alongside some very powerful, influential, retired Army Generals have rejected Atiku’s pursuit of a presidential ticket on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
There are indications that OBJ and the Generals have insisted on power shifting to the South ahead of the next general elections.
You may recall that some weeks back, some PDP stalwarts led by the party’s national chairman, Iyorcha Ayu, paid a visit to Obasanjo’s Ota residence in Ogun State, seeking his return to the opposition party.
Though Obasanjo rejected the offer to retake his position as a PDP chieftain, 7 years after tearing his membership card, he, however, promised to function in an advisory capacity for the party.
Well, with the look of things, the former Nigerian leader has kicked things off by rejecting Atiku’s bid to emerge as the party’s presidential flag bearer. And the decision isn’t his alone as other powerful ex-army generals are said to be backing the move.
On who their preferred candidates are, the Generals have reportedly picked former Anambra State Governor, Peter Obi, former Deputy Central Bank Governor (CBN), Prof. Kingsley Mohgalu, and president of the African Development Bank (AFDB), Akinwumi Adesina.
These individuals were allegedly identified by the generals because they support the calls for a Southern presidency in 2023.
While it is true that this development will knock the wind out of Atiku’s campaign sails,two other points can be deduced from the decision made by OBJ and his military colleagues.
1. PDP’s Southern governor’s bloc is set to have their way at last
It is common knowledge that the Peoples Democratic Party has been embroiled in a battle to determine which geopolitical zone will clinch the party’s presidential ticket for quite some time now.
While the Northern caucus in the PDP is insisting that any region can produce the party’s presidential flag bearer, the Southern governors, led by Nyesom Wike (Rivers) and Seyi Makinde (Oyo) are demanding that power must be ceded to their region ahead of the 2023 general elections. This has led to a cold war between these factions in the party.
With the influential army generals in the country aligning themselves with Wike and co, it appears the South might have its way after all.
2. The Southeast could produce Nigeria’s next president for the first time since 1999.
While Moghalu is not a member of the PDP, Peter Obi is among the top contenders for the party’s presidential ticket.
Quite interestingly, Obi is not only a popular figure PDP bigwigs, but the former Anambra governor is also a household name among Nigerians.
With this in mind, the endorsement received from OBJ and his colleagues could provide the perfect opportunity for the Southeast to produce its first president since the country ushered in a new democratic era in 1999.
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