Today marks one year until the 2023 presidential election in Nigeria, and candidates from the two main political parties, the All Progressives Congress (APC) and the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), as well as others, are vying for the most desired post in the land.
Despite the fact that the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, is yet to begin electioneering, the political space is already buzzing with the activities of potential aspirants who have begun doing the groundwork, meeting key stakeholders in an effort to sell their aspiration.
Although roughly 11 people from various backgrounds have formally declared their intentions to run for their party’s ticket, many of the big names rumored to be eyeing the presidency have yet to make a formal statement, despite their footprints being all over the political landscape.
Those who have so far declared are listed below:
BOLA TINUBU: Senator Bola Ahmed Tinubu, the former Lagos State Governor, has been engaging with various interest groups and individuals since informing President Muhammadu Buhari of his ambition to succeed him. Already, organizations like SWAGA (South-West Agenda for Asiwaju), are traversing the country to push Tinubu’s candidacy.
SAM OHUABUNWA: Sam Obuabunwa is the immediate past president of the Nigerian Pharmaceutical Society of Nigeria, and has declared his interest in contesting under the PDP platform.
ANYIM PIUS ANYIM: The former Senate President, and one time Secretary to the Government of the Federation, has declared his interest in the presidential race. He is convinced that the next president will be capable of rebuilding, protecting lives and property, reviving the economy, creating jobs, and rehabilitating the country’s shattered educational system. According to him, the challenge at hand demanded a leader with the political experience, vision, and qualifications to lead the PDP to success.
DELE MOMODU: Dele Momodu announced is a journalist and publisher of Ovation International magazine. He declared his presidential ambitions last month in Ihevbe, Edo State’s Owan East Local Government Area.
KINGSLEY MOGHALU: Prof. Kingsley Moghalu is a former Deputy Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN). Moghalu had stated that his intention to run for president again was motivated by concern for Nigerians who are suffering and seeking an alternative to the status quo. In 2019, the former CBN deputy governor ran for president of the Young Progressive Party (YPP) but then switched to the African Democratic Congress (ADC).
CHUKWUKA MONYE: a 43-year-old technocrat, stated in January that the moment has come to take over administration from the older generation. To that aim, the Delta State native has stated his desire to run for president in the 2023 general elections.
ROCHAS OKOROCHA: This would be the third consecutive time the Imo West senator would be aspiring for the Presidency. In a letter dated January 25 to Senate President Ahmad Lawan, the former governor of Imo State claimed that what Nigeria needs right now is someone who is “detribalized” and can unite the country.
AMINU TAMBUWAL: Aminu Tambuwal, is the current Sokoto state governor. The former Speaker of the House of Representatives, who announced his desire following a recent high-level stakeholder meeting in Sokoto, claimed he is not only well equipped but also eager to address the country’s various problems.
DAVID UMAHI: David Umahi is the current Governor of Ebonyi State. He declared his 2023 presidential ambitions at the State House, in Abuja, 24 hours after former Governor of Lagos State, Tinubu, also indicated an interest in the race. He is also the Chairman of the South-east Governors’ Forum.
YAHAYA BELLO: Yahaya Bello, the governor of Kogi State, was one of the first Nigerians to express interest in running for president in 2023 under the current APC flag. Bello spoke out in Bauchi when addressing APC legislators and women’s organizations from the northeast during an extraordinary gathering held at the Hazibal hotel a few weeks ago.
SANI YERIMA: Sani Yerima is a former Governor in Zamfara State. He declared his intention to run for the post of President while speaking during a BBC Hausa programme in Gusau.
KHADIJAH OKUNNU-LAMIDI: Khadijah Okunnu-Lamidi, a young entrepreneur and youth development advocate, has promised to make Nigeria work for its diverse population if given the opportunity. She is the daughter of former Federal Commissioner of Works and Housing, Lateef Femi Okunnu (SAN).
Some of Those Who Have Not Declared Include:
OLUYEMI OSINBAJO: With an increasing number of organizations voicing support for Vice President Yemi Osinbajo and asking him to run for President in 2023, there is speculation that he could declare his interest soon.
ATIKU ABUBAKAR: Despite apparent opposition to his candidacy, former Vice President Atiku Abubakar intends to run for President again in 2023. Adamu Atiku, Atiku’s son, announced that his father would run for president in 2023.
GODWIN EMEFIELE: The governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Mr. Godwin Emefiele, has been increasingly urged to run for president. A charismatic technocrat with enticing credentials – unquestionably a breath of fresh air in the political sphere.
BUKOLA SARAKI: The former Governor of Kwara State has not conducted a formal announcement of his candidacy, but he has intimated on multiple occasions on his active Twitter and Facebook accounts that he will most likely run for the most coveted position.
ROTIMI AMAECHI: Despite the fact that Rotimi Amaechi, the former governor of Rivers State, has not stated his desire to run for president, several interest groups in the country have been pressuring him to do so. Some claim that, at 56, Amaechi is free of the old age-related health problems that plague some hopefuls.
BALA MOHAMMED: Bala Mohammed, the governor of Bauchi State, has stated that he intends to run for president in 2023 under the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP). He is currently consulting with stakeholders around the country, including former President Goodluck Jonathan.