By Biodun Busari
The Director, Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC), Prof Ishaq Akintola, has described the former governor of Lagos State, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu as an outstanding politician who is second to none among the presidential aspirants of the All Progressives Congress.
Akintola said this on Wednesday to congratulate Tinubu who polled 1,271 votes to emerge as the APC presidential candidate at the conclusion of the ruling party’s Special Convention at the Eagle Square, Abuja.
Tinubu in a landslide win defeated strong contestants in the persons of the erstwhile Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi, who came second with 316 votes and the Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo, who garnered 235 votes to come third.
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Reacting to the victory during an interview with Vanguard, Akintola who is a proponent of Yoruba Muslim President in 2023, congratulated Tinubu, but advised him to be noble and modest in victory.
The Islamic cleric expressed gratification over the emergence of the APC national leader to contest presidential election next year, adding that other contestants under the ruling party are not to be vilified.
Akintola said: “It is sweet victory and nothing could have been better than this. Senator Bola Ahmed Tinubu has proved his capacity, he has proved his popularity, he has proved his performance, and he has proved his political experience.
“We don’t want to denigrate any personality but I must affirm that in this group, among those who contested against him, Bola Tinubu is nulli secondus.
“Tinubu has proved as a Yoruba from the South-West, that nobody can push him aside when it comes to politics.
“We feel gratified. We feel satisfied for the fact that our project of wanting a Yoruba Muslim as President in this country by 2023 is coming to fruition.
“It may not be Uhuru yet but at least we are almost there by emerging as the Presidential candidate, and that golden opportunity is already on the way. We want to congratulate him and we want him to be magnanimous in victory and to be humble in triumph.”
When asked if Tinubu has a chance to defeat the former Vice President, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar who is the Presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP in 2023 presidential election, Akintola said: “That is futuristic. We don’t look into the future.
“What we do is that we continue to pray and work. “Ora et Labora,” which is work and pray is our policy. And we will be optimistic. We rely on Allah and we know that he will not disappoint us.”