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APC presidential primary: Nine aspirants who withdrew from the race

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THE ruling party All Progressives Congress (APC) is about rounding up its presidential primary election which commenced at the Eagles Square on Tuesday, June 7. Delegates from 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) voted at the event.

A total of twenty-three (23) aspirants were billed to contest the primary election.

However, some of the aspirants withdrew from the race and asked their supporters to vote for other contestants.


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In this report, The ICIR takes a look at the aspirants who withdrew from the APC presidential primary election.

Ibikunle Amosun

The former two time governor of Ogun State and serving Senator joined the presidential race on the May 5, 2022 with a promise to “provide a leadership that will galvanize our dear country to achieve her manifest destiny as a leader in Africa and of the black race”.

He however stepped down for Bola Tinubu at the venue of the primary election. According to him, Tinubu has the ability to transform the country.

“In the spirit of consensus building, I have stepped down for Bola Ahmed Tinubu. There is no best man to do the job. It is Tinubu,” he said.

Godswill Akpabio

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Akpabio resigned his appointment as the Minister of Niger Delta Affairs in order to pursue his presidential ambition.
He said that he took the decision to step down for the APC chieftain, Tinubu in the interest of the party and the nation. He asked his supporters to pitch their tents with his choice of candidate.

Kayode Fayemi

The serving governor of Ekiti State also stepped down for Tinubu.

He said, “It is only in unity and cohesion that we can meet our manifest destiny. I am stepping down for Bola Ahmed Tinubu.”

He told his supporters to vote for the former Lagos State governor.

Dimeji Bankole

The former Speaker of the House of Representatives and 2019 gubernatorial candidate in Ogun State joined the presidential race on May 6, 2022.

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Bankole, who became the youngest Speaker in the House when he was elected at the age of 37, was among the aspirants that stepped down for Tinubu.

“I’d like to step down for Bola Ahmed Tinubu,” he said.

Nicholas Felix

Aged 40, the youngest presidential aspirant declared his interest to contest in the APC presidential primary election on Saturday April 30, 2022. The United States-based Nigerian pastor was a 2019 presidential candidate under the platform of Peoples Coalition Party (PCP).

He announced his intention to withdraw from the contest and support the Vice President Yemi Osinbajo to emerge as the party’s flag-bearer. “I’m stepping down for Vice President Yemi Osinbajo,” he declared.

Uju Ohanenye

The only female aspirant in the race said she obtained the form to be the mother of the nation, as the country lacks women expertise. “My fear is that men will want to muscle me out, but I am standing firmly for the people I am here to protect. They will want to push me over, but I cannot be intimidated. I have been emboldened,’’ she said.

Upon obtaining her form, she said she would withdraw from the race for any aspirant with the vision and desire to address growing poverty and insecurity in the country.

At the party convention on Tuesday, she stepped down for Tinubu.

She said, “Vote for someone that will ensure the brighter future of our children. I feel I should step aside for that life saver and the best candidate who is Asiwaju Bola Tinubu. I beg my supporters to vote for Tinubu.”

Muhammad Badaru Abubakar

The sitting governor of Jigawa State since 2015 declared his interest to participate in the presidential race on May 4, 2022. He announced his withdrawal from the contest and urged his supporters to back Tinubu. He said, “I want to reconfirm my withdrawal from this race and support our leader Bola Ahmed Tinubu.”

Borrifice Ajayi

The serving Senator from Ondo North Senatorial District of Ondo State declared his ambition to contest the presidential election on Saturday May 14, 2022.

The Deputy Majority Leader of the 9th Senate however stepped down for Tinubu.  “I am stepping down for Bola Ahmed Tinubu,” he said.

Ken Nnamani

Former Senate President from 2005 to 2007, Ken Nnamani is one of the leading voices in the quest for a south-eastern presidency. He however declared his decision to step down from the contest citing injustice against the South-East where he is from.

Nnamani said the South having conceded the national chairmanship of the party to the North, there was no need for the Abdullahi Adamu-led National Working Committee (NWC)  to keep debating on zoning the presidential ticket to the South.

“In the present circumstances, it does not make any sense for me to continue in the race as I have not had the opportunity to market my profile and ideas to the delegates of our party in a manner that allows for deliberation and introspection.

“Therefore, I discontinue my aspiration and wish the party successful primary and unity of purpose so that we can win the 2023 general elections. I will continue to engage with the party and its leadership to make sure that the ideas and values that I cherish and propagate find strong footing in the party administration and in public leadership after election,” he said as he pulled out of the race.

Author profile

Omolola Pedro is a Reporter/ Fact-Checker at The International Centre for Investigative Reporting. She believes in a society that is fair to all. She has deep interest in Gender Equality, Social Justice, and protection of human rights.

You can reach out to her via mail opedro@icirnigeria.org, Twitter:@pedro_omolola

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