Tuesday , July 16 2024

OPINION: The President Nigeria needs in 2023

The time is ripe again; it’s election season in Nigeria. The contenders and pretenders are gunning for different elective positions. Those with genuine interest in moving the nation forward are leaving no stone unturned to actualize their dream, the same way those that are bent on just contesting for the sake of political power are also throwing their hats into the ring. As personalities with huge demands from citizens making moves to offer themselves for service are set to heed the calls, those who are never wanted in the coveted seats are equally eyeing various positions. Nearly everyone will claim to have been called upon to contest this season of declarations of interest.

The degree of optimism in this season is so high and convincing that those who couldn’t win an election for their household are so confident of emerging victorious in a country of about 200 million. As the candidates or aspirants not accepted in their own locality and by the Permanent Voters’ Card-carrying electorates are assertive in winning, so are the candidates without a strong political base and connections across the six geo-political zones who are optimistic about being elected come 2023.  

But beyond the myth and reality of electioneering campaigns and aspirations, there is one mistake Nigerians must not make, and that is the choice of leadership at this very crucial time. Sentiments aside, Nigerians know who the true leaders are among those contenders and pretenders. We know who has been tested and trusted with powers. We all know the leader we are always proud of at a time when it matters most.

We know the true leader who is passionate about the youth and whose vision is to see Nigerian youth grow in all spheres of life. Whose presidency would give ordinary citizens economic power, and under whose watch the rule of law would prevail?We can detect which leaders will pay attention to the needs of the poor and who will be more at home with home-grown solutions to our challenges.

Without mincing words, these qualities are found in the nation’s Vice President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo. If every Nigerian can attest to the fact that the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway is no longer what it used to be, if everyone can confirm that the ever-busy expressway is far better than what it used to be under the 16 unbroken years of the Peoples Democratic Party, then no aspirant would be better to sustain the tempo of development than President Muhammadu Buhari’s vice, with whom his administration has achieved the feat. If the narrative of infrastructure is changing across the six geo- political zones in the country, then the question of continuity should not arise. Nigerians by now should know where to pitch their tent. Of course, they should also know who among the president-hopeful can really continue from where this administration will stop by 2023.

From the south to the core north, the clamour for his name as President Buhari’s successor is too great to be ignored. From the east to the west, Osinbajo’s presidency is said to be the best bet for the regions that have also been clamouring for a power shift. His choice as the next president of Nigeria is openly endorsed by all Nigerian political statesmen and gladiators. Religious leaders in the country unanimously agree that with Osinbajo, Nigeria will get it right.

 The professor of law is the candidate of the emirates and the choice of various kingdoms across the country. He remains the voice of the downtrodden and the saviour of the of several households displaced by the Boko Haram sect. He is loved in south and very much cherished in the north. The east treasures him while the west loves him. The Vice President is a friend of the poor and the rich in the north-west and  the savior of several homeless residents and children  orphaned by Boko Haram in the north-east.

Osinbajo remains the only leader the people can trust. The Vice President is the only Nigerian leader who easily interacts with traders across the country. His friendship with ordinary hawkers of unions, groundnuts, and baskets in Kano’s Sabo Market and other northern markets is not in doubt just like his rapport with Gbagi or Oyingbo market traders, will surprise anyone. His interaction with people has no limitations. It cuts across religion, ethnicity, status, and other differences. He remains Nigeria’s first VP who can easily mingle with people of different colours, tribes, and other divides.

He will undoubtedly be a president at the time of need. He responds to issue at the right time without fear or favour. His recent visit to the victims of the Kaduna train station attack and several other timely intervention are clear indication of the kind of President Nigeria will have, if only a right decision is made.

Muritala Folorunsho writes from Lagos.

About Ayinla Muritala

Agbede is a seasoned Journalist with more than a decade experience as the fourth estate of the realm. He is a graduate of Mass Communication from the Univeristy of Ilorin and currently freelance with few of the Nigerian Dailies.

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