OSINBAJO ‘S ROAD TO ABUJA AS VICE PRESIDENT ; THE UNTOLD STORY

Since his emergence as Nigeria’s number-two citizen, completely different accounts had been flying round on how Professor Yemi Osinbajo, really secured the coveted vice-presidential slot, a majority of which revolved across the particular person of Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, his former boss. Indeed, the latest revelation by Chief Bisi Akande in his ebook, “My Participations” was equally slanted to additional pin down the narrative.

You might recall that in 2016, Professor John Paden, authored a biography, ‘Muhammadu Buhari: The Challenges of leadership in Nigeria’, the place he dismissed speculations that Tinubu, influenced the emergence of Osinbajo as Buhari’s operating mate, however contended that Buhari, as a substitute, selected Osinbajo regardless of loads of strain from Tinubu, who was within the place. That ebook raised loads of mud and as anticipated, Tinubu’s troopers went for the professor.

But, no matter whichever model you need to have learn or heard, what you might be about to learn now could be the untold story of how Professor Osinbajo, grew to become Buhari’s operating mate and finally, the Vice President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

It occurred that the All Progressives Congress (APC) was nearly operating in opposition to the deadline for the submission of names of its candidates forward of the 2015 presidential election. There was no debate about its presidential candidate, Muhammadu Buhari, who had emerged at a conference held in Lagos in December of 2014. But the social gathering had been held hostage on its selection for the operating mate.

In the forefront of the confusion that had ensued in consequence was Tinubu, who didn’t conceal his need to fill the slot. He hinged this on the understanding he allegedly had with Buhari within the early days of their proposed alliance, earlier than the merger that finally culminated within the formation of the APC, now boasting a number of different tendencies.

With a much bigger home made doable by what was often called the ‘legacy parties’ and different people, who championed the change motion, a Muslim/Muslim ticket had grow to be arguably impracticable.

This a lot was canvassed by a majority of the actors with stakes within the social gathering, particularly, with the rising assaults from the Boko Haram terrorist group. They had thought of a Muslim/Muslim ticket a really onerous promote.

However, with 24 hours to deadline for submission of names, coupled with the truth that Tinubu had made a clean selection of a operating mate almost unattainable, together with the truth that he was made to chair a range committee, which didn’t fly, due to his vested curiosity, Buhari then determined to take the bull by the horn, being the candidate.

While the underhand intrigues subsisted, Buhari had arrange a workforce of some individuals, together with a former governor of Zamfara State, Abdul-Aziz Yari; former President of the Senate, Dr. Bukola Saraki; incumbent Governor of Sokoto State, Aminu Tambuwal and his predecessor, Magatakarda Wamakko, amongst others to shortlist names of possible candidates for him, from the South.

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Interestingly, it appeared there was a consensus that with the function of the Southwest, the operating mate should come from the zone, cause different of us from different elements of the nation couldn’t fly.

The committee had accomplished its work and submitted an inventory of three names to Buhari. First on the record is a former Osun State governor, Prince Olagunsoye Oyinlola, adopted by Senator Olorunimbe Mamora and third, Professor Yemi Osinbajo. Please, comply with the development and the way Osinbajo’s identify first featured within the 2015 theatrics.

Armed with the record and cautious of the deadline staring him within the face, Buhari left for Tinubu’s home in Abuja, first to elucidate {that a} Muslim/Muslim ticket was not going to fly, which means he can be unable to run with him and that within the different, he (Tinubu) may suggest anybody from the record to him as his most well-liked selection for the slot. At least, he thought it was okay to do him that honour.

Unfortunately, Tinubu didn’t obtain the information effectively and flared up so dangerous that he was alleged to have engaged in confrontation with Buhari, who stormed out of his home, after Tinubu had insinuated betrayal. Amongst these in Tinubu’s home on the time have been Chief Bisi Akande, Rauf Aregbesola and Adams Oshiomhole. But solely Oshiomhole walked Buhari to his automobile as he made to depart the home.

From Tinubu’s home, Buhari stopped over on the dwelling of a former governor from the Southern a part of the nation and informed him all that transpired, and went again dwelling – offended and disillusioned.

Getting dwelling, he despatched for Saraki and when the previous Senate President bought to his place, he narrated what occurred and the embarrassment meted out to him, saying if Tinubu wished a combat, he was prepared and he would give it again in full dose.

But Saraki pleaded with him that it was too early and that the state of affairs was not what they couldn’t handle effectively earlier than the elections. Saraki instantly contacted a former Ogun State governor, Senator Ibikunle Amosun, and hinted him that there was hearth on the mountain and that he wanted to return round to affix forces with him to handle the state of affairs. Amosun left his dwelling in Abeokuta, first for Lagos after which Abuja, and straight to Buhari’s dwelling.

Thus, when he bought there, he was intimated with all that had occurred, however he was notably frightened about deadline and pleaded with Buhari to let him take it over from there. So, he left for Tinubu’s place to shut the deal.

By the time he bought to Tinubu’s residence, Oshiomhole had left however nonetheless with him have been Baba Akande and Ogbeni Aregbesola. Typical of Amosun, who wouldn’t waste time on something, he informed Tinubu that Buhari’s thoughts was already made up, however that he ought to determine now, who he wished because the operating mate, not less than, that solely the person he selected can be offered to Buhari and never give him the pleasure of selecting from an inventory.

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Still offended and disillusioned, the primary particular person Tinubu steered in that rage was Oshiomhole. But as if deliberate, there was nearly a unanimous opposition from everybody within the room. Then, Aregbesola steered Osinbajo and he (Tinubu) opposed it, saying Osinbajo was a type of, who campaigned in opposition to a Muslim/Muslim ticket and should due to this fact not profit from it.

Now, let’s digress a bit. Tinubu’s anger in opposition to Osinbanjo was this. The former Lagos governor had arrange a workforce of individuals near him to ponder the Muslim/Muslim thought and the easiest way to push it ahead. Those on the workforce included Professor Yemi Osinbajo, Senator Tokunbo Afikuyom, Mr. Wale Edun, Mr. Dele Alake and Mr. Dapo Thomas. The workforce met usually at a personal Guest House on the Island, Ikoyi to be exact.

But Osinbajo had throughout one in every of their conferences mentioned pointedly that there was no manner he would defend a Muslim/Muslim ticket in good conscience particularly, with the state of safety within the nation. He requested on what account would he return to his household and say he was a part of such a choice? Of course, Tinubu bought a suggestions from the workforce and held it in opposition to him, despite the fact that Osinbajo didn’t imply any hurt.

Therefore, on the point out of Osinbajo, he revolted nearly immediately. But he wanted to offer a reputation and time was quick going earlier than deadline. So, he requested to see the record introduced by Buhari and on sighting it, he mentioned, “Okay, let’s run with Oyinlola.” To that too, Baba Akande protested and it was again to sq. one.

Again, Aregbesola prevailed and contended that, prefer it or not, Osinbajo remained a member of Tinubu’s political household and due to this fact, nonetheless his greatest guess. After a couple of minutes of grumbling, he reluctantly agreed to Osinbajo. And Amosun requested him repeatedly if it was a deal and he responded within the affirmative. Final reply type of factor! Mamora was not even to be thought of so far as Tinubu was involved. Those who know Lagos politics would perceive why.

When he lastly agreed to Osinbajo, Aregbesola even pleaded to be given the honour of being the particular person to interrupt the information to Osinbajo. But Amosun didn’t have the persistence to acquiesce to that request. For him, time was of the essence and that task was dealt with business-like. Therefore, how Baba Akande handed them a notice with Osinbajo’s identify and ordered them to Buhari continues to be a mirage. Besides, Aregbesola didn’t go together with him.

Anyway, within the presence of all, Amosun made a name to Osinbajo to ask, the place he was and {that a} aircraft can be despatched to convey him now to Abuja. But, by the way, Osinbajo replied that he was in Abuja already, as a result of he had a case on the Supreme Court.

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Great, every little thing gave the impression to be working collectively for good, he reckoned. Then requested him to return instantly to Ogun House in Abuja, and when he arrived, he first congratulated him saying, “You’re the next vice-president of Nigeria.”

With a confounding gaze, he conveyed him in his (Amosun’s) automobile and drove straight to Buhari’s home, with Kemi Adeosun, former Minister of Finance, sitting in entrance of the automobile.

Getting to the candidate’s residence, Amosun requested Osinbajo to attend downstairs, whereas he went upstairs to see the president and informed Buhari: “I have him sir,” and Buhari requested: “Who?” and he replied: “Your running mate”.

The APC candidate then got here downstairs, the place he first met with Osinbajo for the primary time as launched to him by Amosun and instantly, ushered them to a sitting space within the kitchen, the place his nomination type was stuffed in a rush.

Osinbajo, filling his type in Buhari’s dinning space, was guided by Mrs. Adeosun, Amosun and Sarki Abba, one in every of Buhari’s home employees, to hasten up the method. Buhari, too, was there watching them full the method.

This is why for these, who know the story, how Osinbajo later turned out to be Amosun’s enemy stays a thriller to them. But with this insider image of how Osinbajo ‘walked from Lagos to Abuja’, readers can now determine by themselves, the particular person, who really made Osinbajo the vice chairman. To do that, nonetheless, 5 centres have to be factored under consideration.

The first is the workforce arrange by Buhari, which included him amongst the three potential candidates. The second is Aregbesola, who persistently talked about him till it was accepted. The third is Tinubu, who reluctantly agreed to his selection, with out which they most likely would have been unable o transfer on.

The fourth was Amosun, who needed to run a serious and critical race from Abeokuta to Lagos and Abuja to make it possible for section within the lifetime of APC was closed. The fifth and most necessary is Buhari himself. He may have rejected him if he wished to. After all, he was going to be working with him and undoubtedly ought to have a say within the selection of his associate.

But for those who requested this author, nobody particular person made Osinbajo vice chairman. The coming collectively of everybody as designed by God did the job. Therefore, nobody particular person can declare the glory. This, in a nutshell, is the story of Osinbajo’s journey to the seat of energy, Abuja.

All the additions and information intentionally mutilated by Baba Akande are curious. But, it’s comprehensible. Above all, if you’re doubtful, many names are talked about right here as witnesses to the journey, you may test with all of them.

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Olawale Olaleye

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