Why Tinubu visited me- Yakasai

Tanko Yakasai and Bola Tinubu

A founding member of the Arewa Consultative Forum and elder statesman, Alhaji Tanko Yakasai, has revealed that he would support the National Leader of the All Progressives Congress, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu’s presidential bid in 2023.

Tinubu had on Wednesday visited the elder statesman at his Abuja residence.

Yakasai told Saturday PUNCH that the ex-governor of Lagos was at his Abuja residence to solicit his support for his (Tinubu’s) presidential ambition in the next general elections.

Of recent, posters and billboards advertising the rumoured presidential bid of Tinubu, who was Lagos governor from May 1999 to May 2007, have been seen in major cities, including Lagos and Abuja.

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Though Tinubu has yet to declare his intention to contest any office in 2023, there have been reports and veiled indications that he might be interested in the exalted seat.

Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, had in October inaugurated the South-West Agenda 2023, a political movement mobilising support for Tinubu to contest the 2023 presidential election.

Tinubu, who celebrated his 69th birthday in March 2021 and commands an arguably large following of political loyalists, has been reported to nurse presidential ambition in 2023, even as political debates get intense for a southern president after the eight-year regime of the incumbent, Muhammadu Buhari , who is from Katsina State, North-West Nigeria.

Between July and October 2021, while Tinubu was in the United Kingdom for a knee surgery and physiotherapy, over 50 politicians, including the President, six governors, dozens of senators and House of Representatives members, visited him at his London home and turned the place to a Mecca of sort.

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In October, the Northern Caucus of House of Representatives, led by Deputy Speaker, Ahmed Idris Wase, had also paid a get-well visit to the APC leader in London and declared support for Tinubu’s reported 2023 presidential ambition.

The 96-year-old Yakasai , on Friday , said he had earmarked two politicians to support for Presidency in 2023.

He, however, said he has no intention to join politics but he has the constitutional right to back any candidate of his choice.

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Asked whether he planned to join the ruling party after Tinubu’s visit, Yakassai said, “I don’t want to join any (political) party but I can support a candidate of my choice. I have said it way back that I will not be a party member but I will support a candidate of my choice.”

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