Governor Yahaya Bello of Kogi State has given reasons why a former Lagos State governor and national leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu cannot become President of Nigeria in 2023.
Bello, whose campaign posters for the presidency have littered parts of the country, said the purported pact between the president and the former Lagos governor is not binding.
Tinubu, who played a key role in the formation of the ruling party and victory of President Buhari, is yet to declare for the presidency, but his body language shows he may throw his hat in the ring.
“Senator Tinubu is one of our leaders and I respect him so much. He has played a very significant role in Nigeria’s democracy and has built a lot of people. He has paid his dues, and with all respect as a son to him, my simple advice is that it is time for him to allow his children to take over the mantle of leadership. And let us do it to the glory of God and his admiration. He should see that those children he raised are now doing well. Let him see how we would manage this country in his lifetime.
“He has a right to contest, nobody is questioning that. I always urge everybody to respect him for the roles he has played in this country’s democracy. He is a man of integrity, to be candid,” the governor said.
Responding to a question on the possibility of Tinubu pulling out from the party if he is denied the presidential ticket of the APC, Bello said, “You don’t build a house and destroy it. I don’t think Tinubu would do that. I think he has grown past that.
“He is an elder statesman who will not say that the country should be destroyed in his lifetime, not even after his demise. So I don’t see him doing that. I don’t see that happening at all. I can speak for him, that at an appropriate time he will throw his weight behind a Nigerian youth to take over the leadership of this country while he would be behind the scene giving support as an elder statesman and one of the leaders of this party.”