Some underlying factors contributed to the defeat of Vice President Yemi Osinbajo at the just-concluded presidential primary of the All Progressives Congress (APC) conducted at Eagle Square, Abuja, on Wednesday, June 8.
In this piece, Legit.ng puts together some of the circumstances that informed Osinbajo's loss at the primary.
1. Lack of northern influence
Although he is Nigeria's second citizen and as such very powerful, Osinbajo, truth be told, does not wield much influence in the north compared to some APC presidential aspirants chief among whom is Asiwaju Bola Tinubu.
Antecedents in Nigerian politics show that whoever secures the backing of the region is closest to winning elections at the national level.
PAY ATTENTION: Share your outstanding story with our editors! Please reach us through firstname.lastname@example.org!
2. Commitment to presidential assignments
Being the vice president, Osinbajo has a lot on his hands, and the volume of official assignments he was expected to perform could have affected the number of trips he made while consulting with APC delegates across states.
Thus, it could be said that Osinbajo was somewhat tied to Aso Rock Villa, while other APC presidential hopefuls embarked on nationwide consultations.
3. Vote buying
Added to this, Osinbajo does not have the heart for vote-buying. He is more of a technocrat than a politician. The Redeemed Christian Church of God (RCCG) pastor may not have been able to bring himself together to do vote-buying which is very common in Nigerian elections.
The price he had to pay for holding on to his Christian convictions was losing the APC presidential primary.
4. Alleged religious bigotry
But on the flip side, Osinajo was alleged to have appointed almost 10 RCCG pastors to key positions at the federal level, although this is an allegation yet to be confirmed.
However, the pastor in charge of the political directorate created by his church came on air to say that members are rooting for Osinbajo's presidency.
This caused a lot of controversies and the southwest Muslim bodies led by MURIC vowed to work against his interest. Their point is that no Muslim from the zone has ever become either president or VP.
Moreover, the north sees him as someone who will turn the federal government into an RCCG enterprise.
5. Alleged ingratitude to Tinubu
Apart from the fact that most powerful politicians from the south are against what they term Osinbajo's political naivety, there are claims that by virtue of his presidential ambition, he showed unforgivable ingratitude to Tinubu who brought him to the limelight.
6. Buhari's indecision
Osinbajo was partly banking on the hope that President Buhari will name him his successor, being that they both have worked together over the last seven years in the presidency.
But the president failed to make up his mind on a consensus candidate. This, no doubt, left Osinbajo to his fate.
7. Tinubu's matchless power in the south
The enormous power Tinubu enjoys in the south is such that he does not need to lift a finger to claim all the votes from APC delegates in the region. Osinbajo comes nowhere close to Jagaban when in terms of who controls the region.
Osinbajo foresees his fate, leaves Eagle Square amid ballot sorting
Meanwhile, Osinbajo on Wednesday, June 8, departed Eagle Square, Abuja, the venue of the presidential primary of the APC foreseeing his ambition to become President Muhammadu Buhari's successor will not see the light of day.
Although the Nigerian vice president was rated among Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu's top opponents in the primary, unfolding events at the election are indicating that his presidential ambition for 2023 would go nowhere.
Osinbajo's departure from the venue is coming at a time when the votes cast by APC delegates were yet to be counted.