Chief Whip of the Nigerian Senate Orji Kalu has thrashed the presidential ambition of national leader of All Progressives Congress Bola Tinubu as dead on arrival and not going to work.
Senator Kalu said this on ChannelsTV hours after the former Lagos governor told President Mohammadu Buhari at Aso Rock Villa that he will run for president in 2023.
But Kalu, a former governor too, said he’s ready to challenge Tinubu, for the party’s 2023 presidential ticket.
According to him the need for Nigeria to have a president of Igbo extraction in 2023 is not affected by Tinubu’s dream.
Kalu noted that politicians from the South-West, where Tinubu is from, had tasted the Presidency, stressing that no Igbo man since independence has been democratically elected as President.
“I do not see Tinubu’s aspiration having any effect on a President of Nigeria coming from Igbo area.
“It has no effect because we are talking based on what Nigeria should be, based on what people should believe.
“Obasanjo had been President for eight years. Osinbajo is about to conclude eight years as Vice President. Yet, no Igbo man since independence has been democratically elected as President. “So, it’s always good to think of what is reasonable and what is more sellable.“That thing is almost like dead on arrival because it is not going to work,” Kalu said.
When pressed if
Asked if he (Kalu) has what it takes to win the APC presidential ticket ahead of Tinubu, he said “I’m the most prepared presidential candidate in Nigeria.
“I’m capable healthwise and as a person, and also capable to face anybody. But the party is supreme. I’m only waiting for the APC.”
Kalu added, “Contesting for President is not the issue. For me, it is who will lead the country into economic miracle and economic turnaround.
“I’m not against Tinubu. If the presidential ticket is zoned to his area and the party gives him the go-ahead, that’s supreme. I’m only waiting for the party.
“But to run for President, I think I’m the most prepared. I did it in 2007.
“If I consider running, I’ll be the most formidable candidate at Eagles Square. I have everything it takes to face any candidate.”
Asked if Tinubu’s ambition will deprive the Igbo of the chance to produce a President, he said, “I don’t want to talk about his ambition.
“All I know is that as long as the party is zoning it to the South, the South-East should take preference to anybody that is trying to run. That is what it should be and that is what I will stand for.”