Mr Tunde Rahman, the spokesperson for the National Leader of the All Progressives Congress, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, has alleged that some chieftains of the party supported Governor Godwin Obaseki of the Peoples Democratic Party in last Saturday’s Edo State governorship election because of the politics of 2023.
Rahman said this in an article titled, ‘Asiwaju Tinubu and Edo Election,’ published on an online medium, TheCable.
Tinubu is rumoured to be eyeing the Presidency in 2023 but he has neither denied nor confirmed this.
However, many politicians within the APC who are also eyeing the Presidency are said to be doing everything possible to ensure that Tinubu’s ambition is truncated.
Contributing to the debate, Rahman stated, “Indeed, it must be pointed out clearly that beneath all the shenanigans that trailed Edo poll, underneath all of that rabble-rousing, rumour-mongering, campaign of calumny, character assassination, deceit and double-dealing is the matter of 2023.
“Rather than first helping their party solidify its stronghold and strengthen it for future elections and re-commit themselves to the party’s ideals and principles, the APC chieftains were tearing at the party’s fabric, destroying its foundation and preparing it for eventual disintegration in the name of playing politics of 2023.
“But like Asiwaju rightly observed, he is but a mere mortal who does not foresee tomorrow. What tomorrow holds, indeed what 2023 holds, is within the province of God Almighty.”
Rahman also explained why his boss recorded a video in which he called on the people of Edo State to not support Obaseki.
Tinubu had a few days to the election put out a video calling on the people of the state to reject him at the poll, accusing the governor of not being a democrat.
Pundits had stated that the video was counterproductive as it helped foster the narrative that Tinubu wanted to run the affairs of the state by proxy as a godfather and further helped the ‘Edo No Be Lagos’ campaign culminating in the defeat of the APC candidate, Osagie Ize-Iyamu.
However, Rahman said Tinubu did not intend to order the people of the state but was only trying to appeal to their sense of democracy.
Rahman wrote, “The opposition PDP and their agents made heavy weather of Asiwaju’s video on social media. Now, Asiwaju did not seek to dictate to the people of Edo. He was not out to oust their rights to choose by themselves.
“Far from usurping their power to determine who should govern them, the broadcast was an appeal to the people borne of a commitment to democratic principles, a clear appreciation of the fundamental role of parliament in a democracy, adherence to the principle of separation of powers, and his irritation by the antics of Governor Obaseki against the 14 lawmakers. It was an appeal for the people to think about the democratic credentials of the candidates in casting their votes.”
He said although the election might be over, the battle for the governorship seat might still be on since Ize-Iyamu might be challenging Obaseki’s victory in court.
Rahman disagreed with Obaseki’s claim that Tinubu and former Governor Adams Oshiomhole of Edo State were a threat to democracy.
The Tinubu spokesman said rather, the governor was the one who had acted undemocratically by denying 14 lawmakers the opportunity of being inaugurated.
He said Tinubu tried many times to solve the crisis within the APC in Edo State but Obaseki remained adamant for several months.