Presidential candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Asiwaju Bola Tinubu on Thursday night, returned to the country after a 12-day rest in London, during which period he had his campaign photoshoot and also held series of meeting.
However, with his return to the country, in Abuja, party sources have hinted of the high possibility that the new Presidential Campaign Council (PCC) list might be ready this weekend.
This is as the Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, has boasted that Tinubu’s antecedents were not only verifiable but marketable for the 2023 election.
Tinubu had left the country immediately after the controversial 422-member campaign list was released. The PCC list met resistance from party stakeholders, including the National Working Committee (NWC) and APC governors, who claimed they were not carried along.
However, in spite of the inability of the NWC and the governors elected on the platform of the party, as well as members of PCC to agree on the kick-off date for the campaign at their meeting on Wednesday, the campaign list would be ready by weekend, THISDAY has learnt.
Chairman of Progressives Governors Forum (PGF), Atiku Bagudu, had after Wednesday described the release of the campaign list by PCC as unfortunate.
But sources informed THISDAY on Thursday that the final campaign list would be ready by the weekend after governors and party leadership made their inputs.
“We will release the final list this weekend. Asiwaju is back in the country, the governors will make their inputs and we move on,” the source said.
Another source told THISDAY that while no specific date has been picked for the release of the campaign list, he assured the people that the list would be released this weekend.
Meanwhile, Sanwo-Olu, who endorsed a grassroots movement targeting two million votes in the state for the victory of the APC in the 2023 elections, campaigned vigorously for Tinubu as the nation’s best bet.
Sanwo-Olu personally led members of his cabinet, including the Deputy Governor, Dr. Obafemi Hamzat, to a conference organised by Asiwaju Grassroots Talk (AGT), where he drummed support for group’s political advocacy and its voter mobilisation strategy across local communities in Lagos.
The event with the theme: “Political Evangelism: Raising Active Voters Above 50 Percent”, was held at 10 Degrees Event Centre in Oregun, Ikeja, and had 5,000 mobilisers working with the group in attendance.
“We are ready to take the gospel out to the electorate and canvass for their support for the Tinubu presidency. Asiwaju has verifiable track records in good governance and service delivery, which canvassers can use to engage and win the support of potential voters. We must talk about the transformative leadership, progressive ideals and vision possessed by Asiwaju to take this country to another level of meaningful development.
“Tinubu is coming to bring hope, bring about change that will translate to real prosperity. He is coming to address the challenges facing the youth, women and the vulnerable in our country. His programmes will touch the lives of traders, artisans and those in search of legitimate means of livelihood. It is because of our strong belief in Asiwaju’s leadership that we are all coming together to endorse this grassroots movement to ensure Lagos is delivered for APC.
“With Tinubu in charge of the country, not only would Lagos get due attention, the Southwest and the entire nation would feel the impact of his progressive vision. The result of his leadership in Lagos is for everyone to see. There is no better candidate to lead the country from next year than Tinubu. All hands must be on deck to work and achieve this objective; we must show the opposition parties how we are better than them on election day.”
Sanwo-Olu dismissed the notion that Tinubu’s candidacy was to advance ethnic agenda, stressing that the APC presidential candidate belonged to the rank of the most detribalised Nigerians.
The governor also said the fulfillment of his promises to the electorate in Lagos would make the residents vote for continuity in the state, noting that his government has touched all parts of the state in projects and service delivery.
Adedayo Akinwale in Abuja