Osinbajo Debunks Tinubu’s Influence In Becoming Vice President

Abuja – In what appears to be a direct statement from the horse’s mouth, Vice President Yemi Osinbajo has ruled out the influence of the former Lagos State governor and national leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Ahmed Bola Tinubu, in his emergence as vice president in 2015.

Osinbajo, who hosted members of the State House Press Corps to iftar dinner, late Wednesday night, said his emergence as vice president came to him as total surprise, especially when he got a call from the former governor of Osun State and now Minister of Interior, Rauf Aregbesola, informing him of his nomination for the plum job.

According to Osinbajo, his ability to steer the affairs of the country, while his principal, Muhammadu Buhari, was briefly incapacitated stands him out as a better candidate to occupy the seat of power in 2023.

Osinbajo, a Professor of Law and Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), also said electing him president would save the country the delay of having to learn the ropes of governance, especially for a fresh candidate who may not have served in such capacity.

The vice president, who is one of the over 10 people seeking to be the presidential candidate of the ruling party, gave further insight into how he emerged as vice president.

As if setting the records straight, Osinbajo said news of his nomination as running mate to then candidate Muhammadu Buhari in the buildup to the 2015 presidential election came to him as a surprise.

He said he was handling a case of a defection of a federal lawmaker at the Supreme Court, when out of the blues the former governor of Osun State and now Minister of Interior, Rauf Aregbesola, called him to inform him of his nomination for the plum job.

“I was working on the case at Peniel Apartments in Abuja on December 18, 2014, when at about 1a.m., I received a call from Rauf Aregbesola that they were coming to Lagos to pick me.

“I said I was in Abuja. He said ‘good because you have been nominated as the vice-presidential candidate’ and I said is that how you nominate people,” Osinbajo said.

The vice president stated that after representing his client that day, he returned to his accommodation and spoke to himself in low tunes after he removed his wig, that “this is probably the last time I will be wearing it.”

He revealed that Aregbesola, who is the current interior minister, and former Ogun State governor, Ibikunle Amosun, later in the day took him to the presidential candidate, Muhammadu Buhari. Osinbajo said he was telling his story to journalists to let them know that an individual’s life can change at any minute.

Speaking on why he wants to rule Nigeria as president, he said he has always believed and stood for a better Nigeria all his life, stressing that his decision to run for the office of president in 2023 was to enable him to fulfil that dream of making a difference.

“Very few people have the kind of training and experience that I have been exposed to, prior to my declaration to run for president, I have met with various groups including governors, delegates and party leaders,” he said.

He, however, said the iftar with the journalists is the first one he is holding with a group that will not vote at the party primaries.

Recall that there had been several insinuations in the public domain purporting that Tinubu played key role in the emergence of Osinbajo as vice president, as such some supporters loyal to the APC leader have alleged that the number two citizen was a betrayal.

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