As voting by delegates commenced on Wednesday morning, June 8, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, the National Leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), is widely seen as the obvious favorite to win the party’s presidential ticket.
According to sources at the party’s National Convention, which is now taking place in Eagles Square in Abuja, Tinubu and Vice President Yemi Osinbajo look to be securing the majority of delegates’ votes.
However, it was gathered that the majority of votes are being accrued by the former Lagos State Governor.
Voting, which was supposed to begin at 6 p.m. on Tuesday, didn’t start until 2 a.m. today, Wednesday, June 8.
The procedure is likely to last until around midday, at which point a winner will be declared.
Equally crucial, as of this morning’s early hours, a total of 14 contenders remained in the race, despite a mass withdrawal of others.
Ekiti State Governor and Chairman, Nigerian Governors’ Forum, Kayode Fayemi; former Speaker of the House of Representatives, Dimeji Bankole; former Ogun State Governor, Ibikunle Amosun; Senator Ajayi Boroffice; former Akwa Ibom Governor, Senator Godswill Akpabio; and also the only woman in the race, Mrs. Uju Kennedy, were among those who had dropped out.
The 14 aspirants still in the race when voting began were Tinubu, Osinbajo; Minister of State for Education, Mr Chukwuemeka Nwajuba; Pastor Tunde Bakare; Mr Ahmed Rufai; Sen. Rochas Okorocha; Mr Jack Rich; Cross River Governor, Ben Ayade; Ebonyi State Governor, David Umuahi; Sen. Ahmed Yarima; Dr Ahmed Lawal; former Rivers State Governor, Rotimi Amaechi; Kogi State Governor, Yahaya Bello as well as Ogbonnaya Onu.
In his speech during the commencement of the convention, Tinubu, committed to ensuring the unity of Nigeria.
Though our tribe and tongue may differ, we must build a united country, premised on equity, fairness and justice. True reform and progress lie not in copying others but in identifying our own opportunities.
I have done this in Lagos, I humbly ask you to allow me to use these skills and experiences to advance the nation.
I come to you with a coherent vision on how to improve our nation; such that our schools, industry, agriculture and infrastructure will become the pride of all.
Ours shall be a land where all Nigerians will have an equal chance; and no one is excluded because of his ethnic background, religious creed, place of origin or social station. We are all Nigerians.