Adams Oshiomhole, former Governor of Edo State, has received the blessings of the National Leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Bola Tinubu, and at least seven governors for the position of National Chairman of the party.
On Tuesday Tinubu, Chief Bisi Akande as well as governors Atiku Bagudu (Kebbi), Rotimi Akeredolu (Ondo), Ibikunle Amosun (Ogun), Tanko Al-Makura (Nassarawa), Yahaya Bello (Kogi), Simon Lalong (Plateau) and Abdullahi Ganduje (Kano) visited Oshimohole at his campaign office in Aso Drive, Asokoro, Abuja.
Speaking with newsmen after the closed door-meeting with Oshiomhole, Tinubu said: “My visit symbolises solidarity and unity of purpose to continue to bring a progressive party that will carry Nigeria in a progressive manner, (to bring about) good governance with courage and commitment.”
When asked if his visit signalled support for Oshiomhole, Tinubu said: There is no doubt. I have worked with him, why should I have any doubt? The stuff of this game (politics) is that you win. Have you seen a democrat who is ready to lose? Just accept it, it is about choice.”
While Tinubu was still answering the question from the newsmen, Chief Akande said: “Democracy is a matter of choice; you would want somebody who is competent enough to do it (the job) and you allow him to do it.”
Speaking further, Tinubu said visiting Oshiomhole was part of the hard work of his reconciliation committee.
In answering a question on the parallel congress held in Lagos, Tinubu said: “Anybody can get a branch of a bank anywhere but check whether your (Automated Teller Machine) card will work.”
The Kebbi State Governor, Atiku Bagudu, told journalists: “All of us, our party is looking forward to the chairmanship of Adams Oshiomhole”.
Bagudu further added that he was not the Chairman of the Progressives Governors’ Forum, but he “can tell you that Adams Oshiomhole is my candidate as a governor and all the governors I know. He is the candidate for the chairmanship.”
In a separate interview, Amosun said: “Oshiomhole is one of us. That is why we had to come and identify with him here and you know what that means.
“You know he is running for the office of the Chairman of the party, so we have to come and identify with him. I know for me and for us in Ogun state, we are supporting him.”
Ganduje had similar words to say: “You know Kano State has the largest number of delegates to the national convention and by seeing me here, it means all the votes from Kano State will go to the former Governor of Edo State.”
Akeredolu, meanwhile, said: “Speaking for Ondo State, it’s so clear even to a blind person to know that we don’t really have a contest for the office of the Chairman. Be that as it is, I believe that when we come in full force, you will see where our votes are; that is if there is ever any contest.”
Ibrahim Emokpaire, one of the chairmanship aspirants, recently dropped from the race to pitch his tent with Oshiomhole.
“My decision [to withdraw] was taken after due consultations with members of my family, my political associates, leaders of our great party and admirers,” he had said. “I have decided, as a loyal party member and a leader of our great party, to withdraw my nomination in order to unite our party and join forces with our amiable leader, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole, to move our party forward.”