By Peter Okutu, Abakaliki
The erstwhile National Publicity Secretary of the defunct New Peoples Democratic Party, nPDP, and Chieftain of the All Progressives Congress, APC, Chief Eze Chukwuemeka Eze, Saturday described Vice President Yemi Osinbajo’s intention to run for the 2023 presidential election as immoral, unethical and unacceptable to the generality of Nigerians
According to him, “Based on the fact that Osinbajo’s mentor, Senator Bola-Ahmed Tinubu, having already declared his interest, regardless of the wobbling condition of his candidature, that as long as Osinbajo is a product of the National Leader of APC, it remains immoral, unethical and unacceptable for Vice President Osinbajo to offer himself to run against his boss whose inputs in his political life need not be overemphasized; contesting for presidency, portrays him as a “betrayer” who is capable of betraying his current Principal, President Muhammadu Buhari, if he mistakenly succeeds to clinch the Presidency, though very much unlikely.”
Chief Eze who alleged that the declaration of the Vice President was a clear tale of “treachery” perpetrated against former Lagos Governor, Bola Ahmed Tinubu added that what the National leader of APC needed at this point from his loyalists, supporters and allies was complete devotion and commitment towards the success of his (Tinubu) political ambition in 2023.
Eze, a member of the APC Legacy Project Media Team explained that although every Nigerian adult who met the requisite constitutional requirements deserved the right to contest an election, however stated that “where such interest threatens public morality and slips below recognized standards of propriety and good taste, people of goodwill owe the public an obligation to bring such oddity to question for public good.”
In a statement issued by Chief Eze, the APC Chieftain stated that after listening to the reasons given by Vice President Osinbajo for choosing to contest next year’s presidential election, he “found it a reasonable obligation as a sane and morally upright Nigerian to alert the world that such declaration depicted political infidelity against his all-time benefactor, Bola Tinubu, who has nurtured a lifelong aspiration for the presidency.”
Congratulating the ruling APC for zoning the Presidential slot of the party to the Southern region of the country, Eze said the zoning arrangement was done with the knowledge that the South Western region of Nigeria, where Vice President Osinbanjo hailed from had been settled with the reign of Chief Ernest Shonekan and General Olusegun Obasanjo, and that “it was safe to settle that the odds clearly favours the South-South and South-East, whose turn it is and whose yearning it was that led to the zoning arrangement.”
The statement read in part: “The same zone has for twelve years since the fourth Republic occupied the Speakership of this country for over eight years, through Hon. Patricia Etteh and Hon Dimeji Bankole from 2007 to 2011 with the incumbent Speaker, Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila spending four years by 2023.
“With this development, considering the fact that South East region has not since the inception of the 4th Republic occupied the seat of the President or Vice President of this country, and considering that the South-South region has only through Dr. Jonathan Goodluck occupied the exalted office for only five years, it will be immoral and unacceptable that Osinbajo or any other aspirant from the South West would be contemplating of getting the party’s flag to contest the Presidential election against the South East and South-South regions of this country in 2023.
“Vice President Yemi Osinbajo and those promoting him are fully aware that President Muhammadu Buhari told the nation by January, 2022, while chatting with the Channels TV, that he has a candidate for the office of the President and for him to now offer himself for the office of President without recourse to the opinion of Mr. President indicates that he is battle-ready to work against the interest of the President and his candidate, while claiming that he is working towards implementing all the programs of the Buhari’s government and the good of Nigerians.”
He emphasized that the declaration of Vice President Yemi Osinbanjo had proved that he cannot be “trusted” with the office of the President of Nigeria, having on several occasions caused serious embarrassment to the Presidency by trying to upturn the stand of the President Muhammadu Buhari on critical national issues, especially when the President was on vacation or receiving medical abroad.
The APC Chieftain said, “assuming that the APC decides to zone the presidential slot to South West, which is very much unlikely, and with Prof. Osinbanjo ceasing to be a member of Lagos Chapter of APC after the revalidation of his membership of the party in Ogun State, it is still be immoral for him to present himself for the 2023 presidential election as all the past Presidents of South West extraction are from Ogun State – General Olusegun Obasanjo, Chief Ernest Shonekan and with him serving out his term as Vice President.
“Such reality will fuel ethnic bigotry, hate and animosity amongst Nigerians of various tribes.
He called on Vice President Osinbajo to withdraw from his presidential ambition as a matter of urgency and “save this nation the embarrassment his unlikely emergence would cause the nation.”