- Another name being mentioned ahead of the 2023 presidential race is Senator Godswill Akpabio, a former Akwa Ibom governor
- A group rooting for Akpabio, who is also the current minister of Niger Delta affairs, say they won't rest until he joins the race
- According to the group, its members are currently mobilising Nigerians to pressure Akpabio to join the 2023 race
FCT, Abuja - A group, Senator Godswill Akpabio For Common Good (SGACG) has declared that it will keep mobilising Nigerians to pressure former Akwa Ibom state governor and minister of Niger Delta affairs, Godswill Akpabio to contest the 2023 presidential election.
The group was reacting to a report comparing Akpabio with Aswaju Bola Tinubu and Governor Umahi of Ebonyi state.
Tinubu, a former governor of Lagos state and Umahi, both declared their interest to govern Nigeria within the space of 24 hours this week.
The SGACG said in a statement by its spokesman, Bello Bichi, that the comments of its national leader were misconstrued.
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Part of the statement sent to Legit.ng read:
“The newspapers were referring to a brief interview with our national coordinator, Dr. Jibril Tafida where he made very positive remarks about the minister.
“Without prejudice to whatever is the opinion of our national coordinator, we believe the headline was sensational.
“This is because Dr. Tafida would not have proceeded with comparative analysis between Akpabio and Nigerians who have already made their interests public, when the SGACG was still consulting and mobilising Nigerians with a view to persuading Akpabio to accept to contest the 2023 polls.
“In the interview, our national coordinator made it clear at several points that Senator Akpabio is yet to give his words to that effect. Comparative analysis presupposes that the senator would have accepted when that is not the case.
“Without prejudice to the interview, therefore, it is obvious that the official position of our group is that we are still at the mobilisation stage and the next stage after mobilisation is the convincing stage.
“We intend to achieve this by presenting our demand to Senator Akpabio in a formal letter endorsed by our group.
“Nevertheless, we will not rest until we are done with the current mobilisation and we are aware that Senator Akpabio is one nationalist loved by all Nigerian men and women of good conscience because he is divinely gifted with special leadership qualities required of modern governance.”
On his part, an All Progressives Congress (APC) chieftain in Akwa Ibom, Barr. Uduak Okon stated that the party in the state will support Senator Akpabio if he decides to contest for the APC 2023 presidential ticket.
“He is eminently qualified. Anyday he declares his interest, the whole of Akwa Ibom APC will queue behind him.
“His connections across Nigeria will also be to his advantage as he has friends and associates across the country.
“We are patiently waiting to see if he will show interest because he is our leader, our father, and the pride of Akwa Ibom and the south-south.”
Governor Udom Emmanuel asked to run for 2023 presidency
In a related development, Governor Udom Emmanuel of Akwa Ibom has been asked to contest the 2023 presidential election in order to replicate his industrialization policy at the national level
The demand was made by some listeners of the popular Brekete Family Radio Live Talk Show in the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja.
Governor Emmanuel is the predecessor of Akpabio in the south-south state of Akwa Ibom.
Senator Rochas Okorocha hints at contesting 2023 presidential poll
On his part, Senator Rochas Okorocha has declared that his predecessor in Imo, Governor Hope Uzodimma cannot stop his presidential ambition ahead of the 2023 general elections.
Okorocha, who represents Imo West Senatorial District in the Senate, stated this in Owerri while speaking with journalists.
He accused Uzodimma of being a paid agent of his detractors to sabotage his 2023 presidential ambition.